My Fishing Diaries.

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Sep 18, 2001
Puddledock Farm Fishery. Road Lake. June 9th, 2012.

Marsh AC club match.


It’s off to what is a new venue for Marsh AC for today's club match, Puddledock Farm Fishery just outside Brentwood in Essex where we will be fishing The Road Lake on the complex. Chris was picking me up today and he arrived just after 7 am, and with my kit loaded into his van we were off. It wasn’t a long drive and we pulled into the fishery car park at around 7·45 am. Climbing out of the van it was immediately noticeable just how windy it was and looking across it was noticeable that one half of the lake was very exposed to this, while the other half was sheltered. Anyway without further ado we made our way over to the on-site Lakeside Café to start the day with a Full English as they had agreed to open up early for us today. I have to say that the food and service was 1st Class, easily rivalling that of any fishery I’ve visited in recent times and one that I’d happily recommend.

Clive unfortunately missed out as he was stuck in traffic on the M25 though he did arrive just in time for the draw and from what I’d seen pegs 1-14 were ones to avoid unless you wanted to battle the wind today, so it will come as no surprise that it was peg 6 that stuck to my hand today, right in the teeth of the prevailing wind. Tony had the shortest walk to peg 1, just as well really as having loaded his trolley wheel into the car he found on arrival that he’d forgotten to load his actual trolley………… not that we weren’t sympathetic to his plight of course.

It wasn’t to far to my peg, but settling into it I really didn’t fancy it today as it promised to be an uncomfortable six hours in an area Dave and Tony had struggled to catch from on a visit a couple of weeks previously, in fact Tony’s advice on the forum had been “take as long as you like for breakfast “. Anyway nothing ventured…….nothing gained.​


I was going to keep things simple today Just a couple of rigs for the pole and the method feeder which would be the main line up against the island at 20 mtrs. The first of the two pole rigs was a 0·8gm NG XT Gimp on 0·16 Ultima power match straight through to a size 18 Kamasan B911X for straight out at around 5 mtrs where I had around 4 ft of heavily towing water while the other rig was a 0.3 NG Edger again on 0·16 Ultima power match straight through to a size 18 Kamasan B911X for the margin line that had around 2 feet of depth. Bait was simply 4 mm coarse pellet for feed (dampened down for the method feeder) and 6 mm and 8 mm’s for the hook along with some sweetcorn and 6 mm GOT Rippers as alternative hookers.​


Somewhere in the course of the morning I’d misplaced my glasses so had wandered back to the café to see if I’d left them there. I hadn’t, but luckily spotted them on the floor by Chris’s van still in one piece, but this meant that I only just made it back to my peg before the All-In was called at 10·15 am. I potted in a mixed pot of pellet and corn at 5 mtrs and the margins and followed that out with a banded 6 mm at 5 mtrs. It was immediately apparent just how strongly the wind was gusting, making presentation even at that distance difficult especially coupled with the tow.

Tony appeared to get off the mark with what looked like a Goldfish after around 30 minutes and a little while later Kevin had taken a Tench. An hour in for me and I hadn’t managed as much as a bite. I’d tried on several occasions to ping a few 8 mm pellets over to the island to prime it for the method, but the wind had blown them back every time. Anyway with no action on either of the pole lines it was time to have a look across with the method feeder, a 6 mm pellet was banded and pressed into the dampened 4 mm’s and cast across tight to the island.

Not a knock, tap or liner followed, it wasn’t looking good, just a question of keep recasting in an attempt to get some feed across there and hopefully draw some fish at some point. Finally after around 45 minutes of this the tip flew round and after a bit of spirited resistance a common of around 2 lbs was safely in the net to get me off the mark. However it took another 30 minutes before this was repeated again with a similar result. Another 45 minutes passed after this with nothing to show for it when I decided to take a walk and see how others were doing.

Jim was struggling with just a few small roach taken on maggot from his margin, but Keith was just sliding a decent carp into the net as I approached his peg. The wind was making it awkward for him but he was just sitting it out on a line at around 6 mtrs and picking up what he claimed to be the odd fish ……​


Next up was Chris who’d taken a few early fish fishing a 4 AAA waggler across to the island though those fish had drifted away and he was now back to fishing the pole. Martin and Graham were both struggling with the wind and going nowhere fast and Mick (or was it Petal?) was searching his margin and already fearing the Milton Keynes Nugget would be heading home with Keith today……​


Round to Clive and the change was amazing, just a gentle breeze from behind as the swims were relatively sheltered by some trees. He reported that he’d had a decent start before it faded. I’m not sure that I believed him though as his float promptly buried resulting in a carp that he swiftly netted before I strolled off ……​


Terry was fishing the feeder across, but for some reason couldn’t get bite on it, a situation that was even more annoying for Terry as Al was having success a couple of pegs away ……​


Indeed Al seemed to be fishing a completely different match from most sitting there in a tee shirt and shorts, regularly taking fish on the method feeder fished across to the island ……​


Dave had departed for a spot of lunch at the café along with Kevin and Jean, while Eddy was suffering along with a lot of us on what was his first club outing of the year. Rod was having an enjoyable day fishing a feeder half way across what looked like a Mill Pond and was just about to net his eighth carp of the day……​


Tony had added a few silvers from his margin swim as had Ken who was having a similar battle to me with the wind. I wish I could say that the second half of the match was an improvement, but it wasn’t it remained just as dire for me with just another 3 bites on the method feeder producing another 3 carp of a similar size to the first two and to be honest it was a blessed relief when the All-Out was called at 4·15 pm. I soon had my kit packed away and back to the car park and all that remained was the Weigh-In.

Tony kicked things off with 20¼lbs while Kevin solitary Tench made 2¾lbs and Ken’s silvers 6¼lbs. My 5 carp came to 11½lbs and Jim’s roach and skimmers 7¼lbs. Keith’s claimed 4 fish morphed into a few more and stopped the scales at 40½lbs. Chris put 24½lbs on the scales and Martin and Graham managed to tie on 7½lbs each. Mick waved farewell to the MK Nugget with just 12 lbs while Clive’s fish came to a level 25 lbs. Terry was muttering about taking up Golf as his catch came to just 3¾lbs. Al had romped it for the 4th match on the trot with a fine 94¼lbs (I think it’s time he was banned from using a method feeder) Dave had 37½lbs despite stopping for lunch while Eddie recorded 8½lbs and Rod finished off with 16¼lbs.

Back to the car park for the results and of course Al took the win, Keith was second and Dave third. The section money went to Tony, Keith, Clive and Al.

Thoughts on the day? Puddledock Farm is certainly a nice venue with good facilities, we caught it on a bad day when the weather didn’t allow it to do itself justice, so on balance it’s got to be worth another visit in my opinion.​

Location: Upminster, Greater London, UK


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Sep 18, 2001
Rolf's Lake. Holton. Oxfordshire. June 16th, 2012.

The Jinx Series 2012
Match 2


I’m back at Rolfs Lake today for match 2 of this year’s Jinx Series, just 2 weeks after the first match and having suffered a mare 2 weeks ago when I changed my pre match routine I wasn’t about to let it happen again, so after loading the car this morning and setting off my first stop was my customary one in Battersea for breakfast at the Jimmy’s Griddle café and a ‘Full English’ soon had me set up for the day ahead and feeling that all was right with the world before I climbed back into the car and headed for Rolfs. There was a bit of a hold up on the M40 due to a crash just after Junction 4, but the hold up wasn’t to costly and it was just after 10 am when I pulled into the car park.

There were quite a few already in attendance as they had fished a night match the previous evening and after collecting a cup of coffee I was soon catching up with the events of the previous night, including a first hand account from Terry of how he’d been for a moonlit swim on peg 4, luckily he’d survived to see the funny side of it despite not being able to swim. One of the big questions today was who would be the first wearer of the new Pink Hat, unfortunately Geoff couldn’t be there today, but with 13 victims of the previous match attending Gem would be spoilt for choice, in fact a couple of us tried it for size, Lisa W-P catching me on camera……​


….. but others strangely melted away at the very site of it, it didn’t do Fred any good though as The Minx selected him to be this season’s first wearer……​


With Geoff unable to make it today Dave Wall had seized the chance and stepped into fish for him, so of course it was only polite on my part to offer the chance to reclaim the Golden Nugget he’d handed to me on the previous match. Gem and I had our usual side-bet of a Nugget and I also had one with Neil. For once Malc actually called the draw early at 11·50 am with a full house of 21 assembled for the draw, everyone moving along one section today from the previous match.​


C section for me today and with the wind blowing down toward the Little Lake not the most favourable of sections I felt although it had produced 1st and 2nd in the previous night’s match. Into the bag and it’s peg 26 on the car park bank for me today with Ade on peg 28 to my left for company and Neil to my right on peg 24 along with Dave Wall on peg 22. The Minx had drawn peg 30 so it should be easy to keep an eye on the possible destination of the Nuggets today. It didn’t fill me with confidence though as Simon had won the night match from peg 28 with 175½lbs and with Ade being his partner in the ‘Pairs’ he’d fully briefed him on how he’d fished the peg. Mat had fished Dave Wall’s peg and come second with 121 lbs while Malc had fished Neil’s peg and weighed 74¼lbs. Mine had been fished by Nick Williams who’d only managed 17 lbs for last place, so it looked like I might have it all to do.​


A nice short walk meant that it didn’t take long to settle my gear into the peg despite there being about an inch of water covering the platform. I don’t seem to draw the car park bank that often but decided to keep it relatively simple with just 3 pole lines all on a top 2 + 2, a comfy 5 mtrs. One straight out in front where I had around 7 feet of water, one at the base of the slope in front of the bush to my right with around 6 feet of depth and the final one on my left in line with peg 9 in around 4½ ft of water. All the rigs were freshly tied and made up with NG XT Mugger HD’s in sizes 0·3gm, 0·4gm and 0·6gm on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to size 16 Kamasan B911X’s. Bait for today was a mix of 4 and 6 mm fishery pellet for feed along with some 6, 8 and 11 mm pellets for banding along with some corn and GOT Baits soft hookers.

The All-In came at 2 pm and I fed two small pots of mixed pellet and corn straight out and one on the other 2 lines. Nothing straight away but Neil had started on the feeder cast to the aerator and snared a bream straight away which was soon followed by a carp. It’s times like this that you start questioning your own approach. Should I have set up a feeder? No point worrying about it now though, Neil is a regular at the lake and has had his fair share of results there, so time to file that away for future reference and get on with fishing my own match.

I made the mistake of leaving the first couple of indications to let them develop………. they didn’t, so at the next dip a lift brought some resistance and a decent skimmer was soon in the net to get me off and running. I just kept feeding a pinch or two of mixed 4 and 6 mm’s every minute or so and soon had my first carp in the net as well, nothing big at around 7 lbs but it really scrapped well, staying deep and reluctant to come to the surface and it set the pattern for my match. I seem to get my fair share of draws next to Neil and it always makes for a good day as he likes a bit of banter and there’s always a few laughs to be had along the way.

Neil had definitely got off to the better start but I had the feeling that I was staying in touch over the first couple of hours with 4 more carp and another skimmer. John Bennett had strolled up to retrieve Ollie who was trying to cadge some luncheon meat from Neil while he was playing what looked like a decent fish that took him a bit of time to get to the net……​


A cracking Mirror that looked a good 15 lbs but rather disappointingly only showed as 12½lbs on the scales, obviously spawned out. Ade had picked up a few as well and in fact looking around the Big Lake everyone seemed to be getting a few at one time or another and one of those was Mat on peg 8 who seemed to be catching pretty regularly​


I soon spotted Dave Moore, to be fair he’s a big lad and hard to miss, even more so in his fluorescent orange bib and brace and a quick chat soon revealed that he was suffering down on peg 40 getting blasted by the wind in his face without as much as a bite to show for his efforts so far.

I opted for a look at my left hand line with a banded 8 mm on the hook and first put in the float just kept on going, the fish set off for the middle and put up dogged resistance before succumbing to the pressure, a nice common of 13½lbs, but I couldn’t tempt another bite from that line so opted to take a look down the slope by the bush. That produced a decent skimmer straight away followed by a common that made a bee-line for safety under my platform but I was lucky and managed to grab the line and pull it out from under there before it broke me and soon added it to my net.

Meanwhile Neil had broken his landing net handle returning a weigher, but luckily had a brand new spare in his holdall. The Minx however was struggling on peg 30, it hadn’t been fished on Friday night and it looked like the lack of feed previously was handicapping her as she still had nothing to show for her efforts today……​


With nothing more to show from the edge of the bush it was back to straight out in front for me and things started to pick up from there on in as I started to put together a steady run of fish, mostly net fish but still decent weight builders. Meanwhile Neil had lost a big common right at the net that he’d played for ages after foul hooking it in the tail on his feeder rod, and then just to add further insult to injury had the thread fall off his new landing net handle. Luckily he managed to borrow another from Paul Jay who was at the lake.

YEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSS rang round the lake as Gem finally had a carp to show for her efforts and this was swiftly followed by another, was she going to have a good end to her match? Opposite me on peg 14 Dai was starting to pick up some big weighers fishing tight down his right hand margin ……​


…… but had a disaster when a big double that he was unhooking rolled in the landing net and with a big splash was back in the lake before he could weigh it.

The last hour saw my bites become very iffy and I bumped a few on the strike despite changing the hook although it didn’t seem to have lost it’s point. I did manage to put another 5 in the net though, and Neil reported the same, losing six fish on the trot before the All-Out sounded a 7 pm. Neil felt I may have edged it, but I felt that he may have the advantage with more weighers on the board, Whichever way I felt it would be close as I reckoned on having around 120 lbs. Dave Wall would be there or there abouts as well as he’d had a good second half tucked away on peg 22 and had a few weighers on the board. Ade would be in contention as well although he felt he’d had to many skimmers among his carp.

With the kit packed away and back in the car I said farewell to Neil, he had to leave early as he had somewhere to go, then it was time for the Weigh-In, all would be revealed.

Simon in A Section was first to weigh with 87 lbs followed by Steve who’d finally caught late for 76¼lbs. Paul’s 43½lbs was followed by Dave M’s 51¼lbs so he’d got a few in the end. Nick W-P had 66 lbs and Clive 94 lbs but it was The Jinx who’d walked the section when his peg came to life late on giving him a weight of 167½lbs. Into the first part of B Section and Budgie’s 69¼lbs was soon eclipsed by Mat with 122 lbs while Tony had suffered a day of total frustration for his 44¼lbs. Kevin had 52¼lbs while Fred had managed 71¼lbs from peg 13. Onto C Section and Dai recorded 89¼lbs missing out on a ‘Ton’ due to that big double escaping. Terry had 61 lbs followed by Nick with 53 lbs. Round to peg 22 and Dave Wall recorded his first Rolf’s ‘Ton’ with 107½lbs. Neil’s weight was 117½lbs and my weight showed how close it was with my 121¼lbs proving good enough to take the section. The final part of B Section saw Ade put another ‘Ton’ on the board with 105 lbs, The Minx however was a little despondent with just 3 carp for 28½lbs leaving a lot of people very relieved. Last to weigh was Dave C who’s 69 lbs brought matters to an end.

Back to the hut and the winner on the day was The Jinx himself, Mat taking second while I’d taken third overall which meant that the section money was ours as well along with 3 Golden Nuggets for me.

Who’s got The Pink Hat for the next match? Well with no victims today it looks like The Minx will be wearing her own hat next time, but before anyone gets to cocky beware ………… I’m sure she’ll be looking for revenge next time out.
Overall Result

No names in Pink as nobody was “MINXED”


Location: Holton, Oxfordshire OX33, UK


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Sep 18, 2001
Alders Farm Fishery. Great Brickhill. Buckinghamshire. June 23rd, 2012.
Alders Farm Match

Like a lot of these things today’s trip to Alders Farm all started when back in early April, Linda (Mermaid) made quite an innocent post on The Maggotdrowning Forum asking whether there would be any interest in a match of some sort at the venue. It was soon obvious there was a bit of interest and before long Linda found herself entering into a new job, that of ‘Match Organiser’ having managed to get a Saturday in June sorted.

I travelled up with Dave the fish today and it was around 8·20 am when we arrived at the fishery, First things first and a quick trip to the new on site tackle shop tackle shop for some fishery pellets and a chat with Trevor Price and then getting the nets dipped while Dave dropped our gear at the bottom of the hill. A good few were in attendance and I found Linda to check in, she handed me a name badge, a nice touch so that everyone would know who was who. Next stop was down to The Pump House overlooking the lake to grab a quick breakfast and catch up with some more of today's participants. Much chat over the prospects for the match and the general consensus was that the unsettled weather and rain during the week would keep the weights down today, though everyone should enjoy some good sport.

Around 9am Linda called everyone to the draw. Gary Thorpe had kindly sorted the choice of pegs for the draw, so into the draw bag and peg 5 was attracted to my hand, not a bad peg and I was happy with that. So off to collect my kit and make my way to my peg……​


There were a fair few of us pegged on the Pump House bank with Jonny on peg 1, Lee peg 2. Fellow Jinx Squad members Fred and Clive had pegs 3 and 4 while to my left was Linda’s husband Chris on peg 6. It was nice to see Chris fishing as he tends to be employed as Linda’s ghillie normally. Next up was Rod on peg 7 and Nick on peg 8, while Keith had plenty of space to himself on peg 12.​


Settling into the swim the first thing that was noticeable was that yet again the wind was blowing firmly into me, not a bad thing in itself, but it meant that I’d be sitting there all match with a fleece on looking across to those sitting there in polo shirts, or in Andrew on peg 27′s case a very poor taste in football shirt.​


Trev had told me that the end of the bush on the right was the sweet spot in the swim, with a back up at 5 mtrs straight out so setting up was quite straight forward. Just 3 rigs all pretty much identical as the swim is pretty shallow(around 18 inches at the end of the bush and around 2½ feet at 5 mtrs) . These were all Nick Gilbert’s handmade NG Power Pencil’s, two 0·4 gm and a 0·5 gm, all made up on on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to size 16 Kamasan B911X’s nice and simple and strong enough to stand up to what would hopefully turn into a good bagging session. Bait was simply 2 bags of 6 mm fishery pellets, a couple of pints of red maggots and a couple of tins of corn along with some GOT Baits soft hookers.

With everything set there was a bit of time for a quick chat with Rod, Chris, Clive and Fred before Linda called the All-In at 10·30 am. A couple of pots of mixed pellet maggot and corn at 5 mtrs and a similar handful fed to the end of the bush but before I can get a bait in the water Clive is playing his first fish of the day……​

I soon had a banded 6 mm on the hook and dropped at the end of the bush. The float simply buried and produced a…………..rudd, not the hoped for carp, there’s loads of them in Ash Lake and it’s normally just a case of working through them and keeping the feed going until the carp move in and push them out. After about 5 rudd the next bite produced firm resistance as a carp powered off. Now these carp aren’t huge, indeed the average size is probably around 3 lbs, but being that the water is shallow they just power off when you hook them and fight well above their weight. In that respect it’s probably handy that I’m used to fishing Rolfs where the carp are of a far larger average size. It’s just a question of getting their heads up so they take a gulp of air and sliding them over the net.

I felt that Clive had got off to a better start in the first hour as I was only picking up odd fish, but as we moved into the second hour I was starting to catch him up as he had longer gaps between his fish. In fact looking around it was obvious that this was going to be one of those days where you had to work for your fish as nobody seemed to be really bagging up, but I was reasonably confident that if I could keep the fish coming at the same rate a ‘Ton’ was definitely on the cards. My back up line at 5 mtrs however was only producing the odd fish so that was written off pretty early on.

Looking on I could see Clive hanging on as increasing amounts of red hydro appeared from the end of his top kit, obviously a decent fish it appeared hell bent on reaching the island, steady pressure finally told though and it was a very relieved Clive that finally netted another fighting fit carp……​


Chris was having a bit of a mare however as the rudd stubbornly refused to make way for carp close in, forcing him to fish long to find any carp, but even then a few to many were slipping the hook as he played them ……​


About 2 pm Trevor Price had a stroll round taking a few pictures and seeing that I thought I’d better have a quick session with my camera so I had a few pictures for this report. I strolled down to Rod (isis) to find him cursing the rudd, they seemed to have settled into his peg and were doing a great impression of Piranhas devouring anything he cared to put on the hook. Nick (pastie) on peg 8 was starting to get among a few however and looked to be getting one over on his Dad, Steve (rookery54) who was across on peg 16 ……​


While over on peg 20 I could see Trev (grannyspodder) who seemed to be waiting far to long between bites today ……​


Meanwhile on peg 22 it looked to me like Gary (shooter560) had decided to try paste in an effort to up his catch rate ……​


On peg 27 Andrew (lemon1) had at least covered up his rather dubious taste in football tops, while Keith was wishing for an upturn in sport like he’d had on his previous visit here when he’d set a new match best for himself ……​


and tucked away on peg 30 was Dave the fish, I’d noticed that he’d been catching as well as anyone on that bank, and with this sort of fishing suiting his style felt he was bound to be in with a shout at the end……​


Back on peg 3 Fred (Milo) was smiling but it hid the frustration of not getting the best from his peg as he was suffering with to many foul hookers and lost fish ……​


While a look across to Lee (red baron) saw him with a smile on his face as he slid another carp over the waiting landing net……​


Steve (big Stump) seemed lost in concentration on peg 38, probably hoping to avoid being beaten by the next peg ……​


Which happened to be occupied by the Match Organiser herself, Linda (Mermaid) who was obviously targeting fish in the margins ……​


As was Simon (sidev77) who obviously had the same aim as Steve ……​


Back at my peg I’d just netted my first fish on my return when what sounded like a rifle shot came from the left, Nick had destroyed a Tri-Cast top kit when a carp had buried itself in the margin reeds. Moving into the last hour I was still taking fish on a steady basis from the edge of the bush in between being heckled by Clive and Chris to the effect that I was bagging and it must be solid with fish in the peg………………. hurtful that neither of them felt that it may be down to my superior piscatorial ability.

Anyway despite this harassment I soldiered heroically on till the All-Out was called at 3·30 pm. Looking down at my clicker I had 49 carp recorded on it and I felt that I had a comfortable Ton+ in the nets, which I felt was a decent effort given how hard the lake had fished today.

As we packed away our kit and waited for the scales the chat turned to how the day had gone. Rod now understood why Gary Thorpe refers to rudd as ‘Vermin’ having suffered a peg full of them all day and Nick showed off his new multi piece top kit. Clive felt he may have 50-60lbs though I was convinced he had more. The scales were moving around the lake pretty fast so it was obvious that it hadn’t fished as it can today and when they got to Keith (Gandhi), my travelling partner Dave the fish was leading with 117 lbs the only ‘Ton’ so far……​


Keith started the weights on the Pump House bank with 71 lbs 14ozs ……​


Rod followed with 15½lbs and Chris put 40¼lbs on the scales ……​


My 3 nets weighed a total of 132 lbs 07ozs to take the lead with 4 still to weigh ……​


Clive did indeed have a bit more than his estimate with 89 lbs to show for his efforts…​


and while Lee was last but one to weigh with 102 lbs 06ozs ……​


and Jonny was last to weigh in with a fine 123 lbs 06ozs.
Back to the Pumphouse for the results where we found that the staff had kindly laid on hot drinks for us, a really nice touch. Linda then called us all to order and paid out the sections……​

Section A:
1st: Peter (Mugger) Morton £20
2nd: Jonathan (jonny_b1989) Broadbent £15

Section B:
1st: Nick (pastie) Allen £20
2nd: Keith (Gandhi) Ashby £15

Section C:
1st: Dave (dave the fish) Collier £20
2nd: Tony (Tony_grig) Grigorjevs £15

Section D:
1st: Simon (sidev77) Watkins £20
2nd: Linda (Mermaid) Billington £15​


Third overall on the day went to Dave the fish, Second to Jonny and the winner was Me and I have to say that I was both surprised and delighted when Linda presented me with an engraved tankard as a trophy, a lovely end to the day……

In conclusion I have to say a Big Thank You to Linda and Chris on behalf of all who attended, spot on organisation, right down to badges so that everyone knew who was who. I think you may have created an annual fixture for the MD’s calendar in the future.

Another Big Thank You to Trev, Gary and all the staff at Alders Farm, Top Breakfast, great fishing, even on a hard day, fully deserving of the Stillwater of the Year Award that the fishery won in the National Angling Awards last year.

Finally, Thanks to all the forum members that attended, plenty of good banter along with more than a few laughs as expected on a Drowner’s match and good to meet up and put some faces to names from the forum.​




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Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Colemans Cottage Fishery. Wood Lake. July 7th, 2012

Marsh AC club match.


Well it’s off to Essex for me today for another Marsh AC club match at Colemans Cottage on Wood Lake. That first glance out of the window didn’t look too promising though there was a bit of sun among the clouds but the forecast wasn’t that good for the day ahead. Anyway with the two cats fed and the kit loaded up it was time to go. Through the Dartford Tunnel and down the A12 proved to be straightforward and I arrived around at 7·30 am to find Simon just returning from a walk round the lake with his brother Tony who had come along as a guest today. First things first and it was into the clubhouse for one of Colemans Big Breakfasts, a great way to fortify yourself for the day ahead.


Terry and Rod were already tucking into theirs and slowly but surely the rest arrived and the banter started to flow. A few were concerned that the weather may have unsettled the fish making for patchy sport, but I was fairly sure that given the quality of the venue most would have a decent days sport. Chairman Dave had daughter Chrissy along for company today and fishing as a guest, she’s not a bad angler and having had a bit of coaching from Tommy Pickering at Lindholme recently there were a few that were worrying about the possibility of being CHRISSIED today.

By 8·45 am it was time for the draw and having dipped my hand in I found peg 12 was to be mine for the match, just a couple away from the one I’d had in the corresponding match last year.


With the gear collected I made my way to my peg, Al was on peg 6 a strongly favoured peg and he would be looking to make it five wins out of five on this years club matches. With just an hour to set up it was make your mind up time as there are so many possibilities on the pegs with the islands running down the centre, The carp in woods run to a good size and the barbel keep growing and fight like hell. I opted for just 3 pole lines. so the rigs would be similar to those I use at Rolfs to take any possible wear and tear. One straight out in front at around 6 mtrs where I had around 5 feet of water, one at the end of the bush to my left with around 4 feet of depth and the final one for the right hand margin which had 18 inches of water close in. All the rigs were freshly tied and made up with NG XT Mugger HD’s in sizes 0·3gm and 0·4gm on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to size 16 Kamasan B911X’s. Bait for today was a mix of 4 and 6 mm pellet for feed along with some 6 and 8 mm pellets for banding along with some corn and GOT Baits soft hookers.


The All-In was called at 10 am and I fed a large pot of mixed pellets with a few grains of corn at 6 mtrs, a handful at the end of the bush and another handful down the margin. I banded a 6 mm and shipped out to 6 mtrs where some bubbles were already coming up and was hopeful of some quick action. Unfortunately it wasn’t to be the wind had picked up a bit and was blowing into me and bringing with it the odd shower (no surprise there then) but I was just getting little digs and dips on the float and only managed to connect with a couple of small roach that I bumped off. despite swapping through the hook baits I couldn’t tempt a thing and while nobody that I could see had got off to a flyer Tony had taken a couple of carp as had Graham next to me on peg 11.

After half an hour of total frustration I gave it up as a bad job and swapped over to target the end of the bush with a banded 8 mm. Still a bit slow but the float finally buried and a lift saw plenty of elastic stream from the top kit as the fish powered off and after a minute the culprit popped up by my nets, a barbel of around 3 lbs. Not the expected carp but very welcome none the less to get me off the mark. Jean had also brought me a mug of coffee so things were starting to look up despite the showers. A couple of small carp followed and an F1 before yet another barbel put in an appearance and it was these that kept me ticking over for the next couple of hours. I could hear a bit of banter between Kevin and Al that suggested that Al was catching reasonably well on peg 6 but from what I could see Tony opposite on peg 29 had made the best start but nobody seemed to be heading off into the distance, though …….


By about 12·30 I got a shout to bring my mug round to Jean if I wanted another cup off coffee and with sport remaining slow took the opportunity to fill in the bush and margin and take a stroll with my camera. Terry was still tucked away under his brolly and didn’t look like he was having a particularly good time of it despite having the fun of watching Dave trying his best to get the better of Chrissy on the opposite bank ……


A quick chat with Al revealed that he was struggling though it didn’t look like it to me when he shipped out, gave a couple of taps and he shipped back with an F1 attached that was soon netted ……


Mick was being a bit cagey as to just how well he was doing on peg 2, but it was obvious that he fancied his chances of taking home the Milton Keynes Nugget today. As I got to the car park I stopped to take a picture looking down the lake so that those reading this who aren’t familiar with Colemans can get some idea of Wood Lake……


Carrying on round Chris’s guest Gary Luck on peg 38 was playing a bream and soon had it safely in the net …….


I soon reached Jean and collected a fresh mug of coffee, while Kevin seemed to be relatively happy with the way his match was progressing. Chrissy on peg 32 had just dropped her rig in short of the bush to her left to see if she could tempt something.


While Dad Dave next up on peg 31 seemed to be targeting silvers fishing maggot down his left hand margin, and although he declared himself confident of being ahead of his daughter at that point, it looked like the actions of a desperate man to me. Tony seemed to be going along steadily with his favourite method, fishing up in the water.


Keith wasn’t looking to happy with his lot and was struggling to get to grips with peg 25, though he probably had one eye on how fellow GOT Bait angler Vic was doing over on peg 17……


Tony Watkins on peg 22 seemed quite happy taking carp on the method feeder, which was more than could be said for his brother Simon on peg 20 who was really struggling to get a bite from anywhere in his peg ……


Keith Powell was on peg 18 and had just started to have a look down his right hand margin as he’d started to see signs of fish there ……


Vic was trying hard to sort his peg out but reckoned it wasn’t really happening for him today and he would be lucky if he had 30 lbs to show for his efforts so far. Ken on peg 14 was fishing his usual relaxed match on the waggler and was into a carp as I passed by……


When I returned to my peg Graham was catching from his margin, but he had the advantage of a reed bed there and I could see fish there. I flicked some more feed to the edge of the bush and the margin, but with no sign of fish in my margin targeted the end of the bush first off. The rest seemed to have done the trick as a couple of minutes in the float buried as a carp picked up the bait and after a spirited tussle was soon in the net.

It wasn’t fast and furious but I started to pick up regular fish for around an hour. All the while I was feeding the margin and with an hour and a half to go I finally saw a couple of tail patterns there. First put in with a banded 8 mm produced a positive bite and another barbel of around 3 lbs, but from then on it was carp all the way. A good common had me thinking I was back at Rolfs, giving a really good account of itself and it was obvious why when I finally slid the net under a big common that must have been close to 15 lbs which was to be my best fish of the day. This was followed by a stunning Ghostie of around 10 lbs and a few smaller fish.

Graham was having trouble connecting with bites and I suggested that he changed to 8 mm pellet and let him have some to try and it seemed to do the trick for him in the last hour. I finished with another five carp including another double before Dave blew the whistle for the All-Out at 4 pm. Shouts of Fish-On came from Graham and Chrissy and I couldn’t help wondering if Chrissy had done enough to beat her Dad……


The gear was soon packed away and I was pretty confident I had around a ‘Ton’ in the nets despite having lost track of just what was in them at the end. I soon had my gear back in the car and had a chat with Gerry before following the Weigh-In Round.

Mick set a good target with a first weight of exactly 100 lbs followed by John with 84½lbs. Next up was Rod with 59½lbs a new PB match weight. Al had a storming end to the match getting decent carp lined up in the margin on paste for 194 lbs. Jimmy had 32½lbs and Terry 43½lbs. Graham put 84½lbs on the scales while my fish came to 113 lbs. Ken had 80½lbs another PB match weight and Roger 29 lbs. Vic had managed 64½lbs. Keith Powell weighed 83 lbs while Simon’s meagre 24 lbs left the bragging right firmly with brother Tony who also recorded a new match PB of 70 lbs. Keith’s 65½ meant he was waving farewell to the MK Nugget today. Jim’s 53 lbs and Martin’s 45 lbs brought us round to Tony with an excellent 126 lbs. Next up was Chairman Dave with a weight of 67½lbs, but he didn’t look to confident, and rightly so when Chrissy put a new PB match weight of 93 lbs on the scales. Sympathy for Dave? ………………. No Chance, it was like a pack of hounds with a 3 legged fox ………… Merciless :roflmao:. Kev was next with 62 lbs followed by Zack with 79 lbs while Chris was the fifth angler to claim a new PB match weight today with 118 lbs. Gary had 28 lbs while Ron was last to weigh with 14 lbs.

Back to the clubhouse for drinks and sausage rolls while Dave worked out the results. Today's winner was Al (his fifth on the trot) with Tony taking second place and Chris third.
The sections today went to Al, Myself, Keith Powell, Tony and Chris.
Next up for the club is Rockells in two weeks time. Can Al make it six in a row or will someone else get a look in? Time will tell.

Location: Essex, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Rolf's Lake. Holton. Oxfordshire. July 12th-13th, 2012.

Simple Match Fishing
2 Day Summer Challenge


Today (Thursday) sees me travelling back to Oxford where I’m spending 3 days at Rolf's Lake. The first 2 days are to take part in the Simple Match Fishing 2 Day Summer Challenge which has been organised by Simon Mound for members of his forum Simple Match Fishing. Simon is a regular on The Jinx Series at Rolfs and along with Eddie Taylor-Green they are responsible for the Rolf's Lake Blog . After this on the Saturday I’ll be fishing the 3rd of this years Jinx Series matches.

With this being a weekday trip I had the car loaded and was away early, stopping as usual for breakfast in Battersea, as along with the rush hour traffic to contend with it was the first day that the traffic lights in London had been re-phased for the Olympics. Actually it wasn’t a bad trip up as I was going against the flow for most of the journey and it was just after 10 am when I pulled into the car park at Rolf's. A good few of the anglers were already there and settling in, erecting bivvies and sorting their kit, while others had travelled up on Wednesday and fished yesterdays Open match. One of the first I chatted to was Dave Wall who was waiting at the gate to guide in Gavin (Gavalar) Lee who was paying his first visit to the venue. The forecast for the days ahead wasn’t good with rain forecast and I had decided to once again sleep in the car as I find it pretty comfortable and less aggro than a bivvie. Right now though we had a bit of sunshine, so I grabbed a cup of coffee and caught up with the gossip and checked out what had been caught from the various pegs the previous day……​


A lot of the chat revolved where everyone wanted to draw, the format for the 2 Days being that the match would be decided on section points and weight in the event of a tie meaning that consistency would be rewarded.​


Pretty soon we had everyone in attendance apart from Malc who would be arriving later so around midday Simon got the draw underway and I found myself in B section having drawn peg 29 on the car park bank……​


At least it was a short walk with my kit, around 15 yards from where the car was parked. Surprise surprise, guess who I had next door on peg 28, yep Neil Riddy, the two of us seem to be almost constantly drawn together recently, but it ensures that the banter always flows during a match and today was double or nothing on the Golden Nugget I’d had off Neil on the previous Jinx Match. To my left was new boy Lee on peg 31 who was on for a Nugget with me along with Dave Wall down on peg 40 for the second day running having had a ‘Ton’ from it in the Open yesterday and looking to reclaim a Nugget from me and The Minx was on peg 25 and we always have a Nugget as well.​


As I settled into my peg it was still quite bright and warm, but the clouds were starting to build ominously. All the rain previously had raised the level despite John having run the pump to keep it in check, so with a couple of hours to set up I decided to make up some new rigs. A couple of Nick Gilbert’s handmade 0·5g Power Pencils were made up on 0·21 Ultima power match with size 14 Guru MWG’s at the sharp end to cover the five metre line (top 2 + 2) along with a 0.3 NG Edger again on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to a size 16 Kamasan B911X for the margin where there was about 18 inches tight against the grass. Bait was a mix of 4 and 6 mm fishery pellet for feed, some of which was well wetted down. Hookbaits would be 6 and 8 mm’s to band along with some GOT Baits soft hookers and corn.

2 pm saw the All-In called and before I could even ship out a pot of pellet Neil was in to his first fish of the day !!!! He soon had it in the net, a carp and it already looked like I would be needing snookers today. I finally managed to get a bait in the water but couldn’t match Neil’s effort though others seemed to be in action quite quickly, most notably young Michael Corsini over on Peg 13 who appeared to be sitting on a shed full today. 15 minutes in and my float slid away, not the hoped for carp but a bream but at least I was off the mark. Another followed then a small carp in the next 30 minutes meaning I had at least caught up with Neil as he hadn’t had another bite after his fast start.

Budgie was up on peg 32 and appeared to be having a rare old tussle with what was obviously a decent fish intent on giving him the run around. Gavin with no previous experience of Rolfs had started on purple Hydro and we had been waiting to see what would happen when he hooked his first carp. We didn’t have long to wait and he was soon watching an awful lot of elastic streaming from his top kit. Fair play to him though he didn’t panic and finally managed to land the fish, though the look on his face told us that he was shocked at the power of the fight……​


Rumour had it that Section A was the place to be today though with Ant on peg 34, Terry on peg 4 and young Mat on peg 7 setting the early pace down there ……​


Nick on peg 9 seemed to be connecting with a lot of fish, but the truth was that most of them were foul hookers and he was having a real struggle trying to get one in the net. Michael seemed to be suffering in a similar fashion, but at least he was getting a few in the net.

Around 3 pm the rain started putting a dampener on proceedings and for me it was just a case of plugging away on the 5mtr line where I kept picking up the odd fish. Neil had started looking at his other lines and managed two gudgeon in two put ins from the bush to his right. Malc arrived just after 4 pm, a sure signal that the weather wouldn’t improve and took a slow stroll to peg 22. Daughter Gem was having a grueller on peg 25, the first carp she hooked snagged Paul Corsini’s rig on the next peg and promptly snagged her under the bush and her mood probably wasn’t improved by having to watch fiancée Simon catching opposite on peg 16 ……​


The whole of the car park bank wasn’t exactly setting the place alight, but Budgie seemed to be having the best of it on end peg 32. For me it was just a question of waiting for the odd bite and making the most of it, a couple of looks down the margin had proved fruitless but I felt that I was doing enough to stay ahead of Neil and Lee. Clive had started to put a few fish together late on over on peg 14, but as he was in Section C today I wasn’t too worried ……​


The margin finally produce for me with half an hour to go, just the one fish, a weigher of 11 lbs but welcome none the less but I have to say I was happy to hear the All-Out at 7 pm as the rain continued to fall. Packing away a load of soaking wet kit is never fun and most seemed glad that it was over. The look on Gem’s face said it all as she walked past, not happy at all with just a bream and a roach to show for her five hours of effort.

With the gear packed away it was time for the Weigh-In and Ant was first to weigh in Section A recording 134½lbs followed by Dai with 109 lbs. Dave W had only managed 68¼lbs from peg 40 today. Pete T had 52¼lbs while Terry had 128½lbs from peg 4. Geoff had 84¼lbs and Mat 111 lbs. Onto the first half of Section B and Dave C had 44¼lbs. Nick had a real frustrating match on peg 9 with just 26 lbs to show for his efforts and Simon W put 43¾lbs. Michael put 106¼lbs on the scales and we moved on to Section C. Clive had 89 lbs and Simon 75¾lbs while Kev had 25 lbs from peg 18. Round to Malc who had 34¾lbs and Dave M with 12½lbs. Poor Gem could only muster 3¼lbs so no Minxings today and Paul C ended the section with 19 lbs. The second half of Section B saw Neil record 52½lbs while my weight was 78½lbs. Gavin’s first Rolfs weigh in saw him put 56¼lbs on the scales and Budgie finished things off with 95¼lbs.

Back to the hut with the rain still falling and Ant, Michael C and Clive were in the pound seats with 1 point each for their section wins, with Terry, Budgie and Simon sitting on 2 points. I’d managed a 3rd in section but had picked up a few Golden Nuggets so all wasn’t lost and with the top 4 weights today all coming from Section A today, it was pretty obvious where most people were hoping to draw tomorrow.

A few of us had decided to retire to The Harvester after the match for a meal so after getting changed we set off for a pint and a meal. It was good to get out of the rain in all honesty and relax and chat about the days events over a meal and when we got back just after 10 pm with the rain still falling I was quite happy to climb into my sleeping bag and get some much needed sleep ahead of the match tomorrow…………
Thursday Result



Day 2
6 am on Friday morning and I woke to a blackbird singing away on the bonnet of the car and realised that it had stopped raining. First things first and the stove was fired up and a coffee brewed before strolling over to the lake and taking in the atmosphere. It’s a great time of the day to be down by the lake watching the ducks and moorhens going about their business with their fledglings. Slowly but surely people stirred from their slumbers, bracing themselves for the day ahead. Some started to prepare their kit and their bait for the day ahead while others took a stroll trying to decide which peg they would like to draw. I took the opportunity to pop down to Asda’s with Geoff and his lad and get a bit of shopping and by the time we returned everyone seemed to be up and about. Gem had decided not to fish today and spend some time with her sister Crystal who’d come down with Malc but Dave C’s son in law Nick was coming down and would fish in her place.

Dave and Gavin decided to go double or quits in an effort to recover their Nuggets from yesterday and Neil had accepted double or quits as well, so 8 Golden Nuggets hung in the balance. Although it was cloudy there were enough breaks in it to allow some sun through and if it stayed like that it could be a decent day and offer the chance to dry the kit out a bit. There was definitely a good buzz today with everyone eager to get going and Simon called the draw before 12 o’clock so everyone had time to get sorted. I still fancied Section A and when I drew peg 6 I was more than happy as up till that point I had never fished it on all my trips down to Rolfs.​


Having collected my kit I set off round the lake. Geoff who’d fished peg 6 yesterday was on peg 34 today, so I stopped for a chat to find out how he’d fished it. Neil was down on peg 38 so I would be able to keep an eye on him while Ant was on peg 40. Pete Tapp had drawn peg 2 for the second day running (Clive had also drawn peg 14 again) and Dave the Fish was on peg 4, while Terry was on peg 7 to my left to complete the section. Setting up was relatively simple, just a question of shortening up yesterdays rigs as it’s shallower in the Little Lake and once again I was going to concentrate on a couple of 5 mtr lines and the margin to my right toward peg 5 with the same baits as well.

2 pm and the all in saw me feeding a cup of pellets with a few grains of corn at 5 mtrs and a handful of wetted pellets into the right hand margin before shipping a banded 6 mm out to 5 mtrs. and after about 5 minutes the float slid away and I connected with my first carp of the day, not a big fish at around
7 lbs but a nice way to get off the mark. This was followed by a couple of bream, one of which launched itself like a Polaris missile when it felt the hook. Another carp soon followed, a weigher this time at around 10½lbs prompting a comment from Terry to slow down and give others a chance.

I then suffered a period that’s all to easy to happen at Rolfs, 3 foul hooked carp in a row that charged around the swim before the hook came back with just a scale attached and a couple of bream that rolled off the hook before they were in netting range. Meanwhile over on peg 34 Geoff had started to put a few in the net ……​


I stuck with the 5 mtr line however as I didn’t want to disturb the margin line to early as I wanted any fish to settle there for later. I could see that Neil over on peg 38 was having a quiet time. It’s one of those pegs where the fish can suddenly turn up often late in a match as they’d done for Dai the previous day ……​


I could see that Dave the Fish was getting a few down on peg 4 and that Pete T was also starting to find a few on peg 2 for the second day running. Ant on peg 40 was fishing long down the edge toward the platform on peg 39 and seemed to be getting some action as well ……​


In fact the only person who seemed to be struggling in our section was Terry on peg 7 and to make matters worse for him Mat on peg 8 was starting to catch as well. Another couple of weighers put my match back on track though the bites were proving a little harder to come by and another couple of bream helped to keep things ticking over. I took a quick look down the margin at around 4·30 pm and took a couple of quick fish, the second being a weigher of 11½lbs but went back to the 5 mtr line to let it settle, increasing the feed at the same time.

The fish had settled at 5mtrs again and I started to put a run of weighers together, all around the 10-11½lbs mark and at the same time I noticed that the fish had started to show up for Neil over on peg 38 ……​


As I went up to the scales with another fish there was an almighty BANG from peg 9, A carp had taken Kev’s rig straight through the bush and his topkit and number 4 had collapsed under the strain, reducing the top kit to 8 pieces which may well be a new record at Rolfs ……​


At the same time Simon was on his way to the scales with a decent Mirror that weighed 15½lbs so I took a quick picture for him ……​


Elsewhere along the Bank Simon W had taken a nice Common of 17½lbs and luckily Malc was on hand to do the honours with a photo ……​


With just over an hour to go the bites had started to fade on the 5 mtr line so it was time to target the margin. An 8 mm pellet was banded and dropped in resulting in an instant take and yet another weigher. Terry popped round to see what I was doing as he was still struggling for bites on 8 mm pellets. I suggested he tried 6 mm’s instead and It seemed to do the trick for him as it finally produced a few fish ……​


I had a really strong end to the match with another 7 weighers, the biggest being 13½lbs before the All-Out was called at 7 pm. Dave the Fish added up the fish on the board to find I had 166 lbs and with 5 net fish and a few Bream I was hopeful that I may have my second Rolfs "Double Ton". Packing the kit away was a leisurely affair as I would be fishing A section in The Jinx Match tomorrow so was going to leave my kit behind the peg tonight.

The weigh-In was soon under way in Section A, Geoff kicked things off with 119 lbs a new PB match weight for him. Neil put 124¾lbs on the scales but was pipped by Ant with 128¾lbs. Pete T had trebled his Day 1 weight from peg 2 with 159½lbs and Dave C was just short of a ‘Ton’ with 99½lbs. My weight proved to be a very pleasing 204½lbs and Terry managed 73¾lbs. The first half of Section B saw Mat put 170¾lbs on the scales followed by Kev with 22½lbs and Simon with a level 124 lbs. Malc had 44¼lbs from peg 13 and then it was onto Section C where Clive on peg 14 for the second day recorded 121½lbs. Paul C had 40½lbs and Simon W 78 lbs. Round to the car park bank where Dave Wall put 63½lbs on the scales followed by Michael C with 66¾lbs, Gavin was chuffed to have his first Rolfs Ton with 100½lbs and Nick W 46 lbs. The final part of section B was finished of by Budgie with 89 lbs, Dave M with 102¾lbs. Dai had 61 lbs and Nick B finished up with 67½lbs.

Back to the hut and while Simon collated the results from the two days the banter flowed as usual ……​


Soon the results were in which Simon announced in reverse order and in third place was Mat Edwards with 4 points and a total weight of 281¾lbs ……​


In second place with 4 points and a total weight of 283lbs was your truly ‘Mugger’ (got to love those Bream)……​


And in first place with a perfect score of 2 points from 2 section wins and a weight of 223½lbs was Clive ……​


So a BIG THANK YOU to Simon, I think it’s fair to say that for a first attempt at organising a match it was a first class effort and I’m sure that I speak for every one in voting it a huge success and it looks like the SMF 2 Day Summer Challenge will become a permanent fixture in years to come. Another bunch of Golden Nuggets had come my way thanks to Dave W, Gavin and Neil and while a few were heading home and farewells were bid the majority were staying over for The Jinx Match tomorrow.

Once again some of us went to The Harvester for a meal and a pint while we chatted over the events of the last two days. and this continued into the night when we returned and ended up chatting to the rest till about 1am, when once again I climbed into the sleeping bag for a kip :sleep2:………
Friday Result




Overall Result

Location: Holton, Oxfordshire OX33, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Rolf's Lake. Holton. Oxfordshire. July 14th, 2012.

The Jinx Series 2012
Match 3


It’s match 3 of this year’s Jinx Series today and having stopped over I was up early just after 6 am and soon had the kettle on for a coffee. Dave Moore was also up and about so I made him a coffee too. We sat on the bench in front of the hut discussing the prospects for the day ahead and watched the resident Red Kite patrolling above the lake and were fortunate enough to see it swoop and take a fish from the surface of the lake not 10 yards away from us. Why is it you never have your camera with you to capture moments like that? Soon we were joined by several others including Dave Wall who had stopped over on the off chance that there might be a spare peg allowing him to fish today. As the morning wore on more people started to stir from their slumbers and after another coffee Dave and I headed for The Harvester for a spot of breakfast. With that taken care of it was back to the lake where the banter was in full swing. The weather was looking similar to yesterday but the forecast warned of showers later in the day.

Around Noon Malc called for the draw and I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t hoping to draw peg 6 again. However it was not to be and I found peg 38 resting in my hand when I pulled it from the draw bag.​


So time for a stroll round to peg 6 to collect my kit and move it round to peg 38. Ade had peg 6 today with Dai on peg 4 …..​


and Neil on peg 2……​


Nick W would be to my left on peg 40 ……​


while to my right was Geoff on peg 36 ……​


and Terry on peg 34 completed A section ……​


Setting up was once again simplicity itself as the rigs from yesterday were still set up on the top kits, but to recap for those that haven’t read the previous report they were a couple of Nick Gilbert’s handmade 0·5g Power Pencils that were made up on 0·21 Ultima power match with size 14 Guru MWG’s at the sharp end to cover the seven metre line along with a 0.3 NG Edger again on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to a size 16 Kamasan B911X for the left hand margin where there was about 18 inches against the clump of grass that overhangs the water. Bait was a mix of 4 and 6 mm fishery pellet for feed, some of which was well wetted down. Hookbaits would be 6 and 8 mm’s to band along with some GOT Baits soft hookers and corn.​


So with plenty of time before the All-In I had a wander back to the car to collect my jacket in case the predicted showers arrived and got a coffee as well. The question on my mind was would it fish as well as yesterday? I’d noticed that the wind had changed for a while earlier in the day blowing up into the Big Lake and had to wonder if it had taken the fish with it? we would soon find out.

2 pm and the All-In was called and I potted a cup of mixed pellet and corn onto the 7 mtr line and a handful of wetted pellet into the margin. Peg 38 has a reputation of being one of those all or nothing pegs, relying on the fish turning up in the margin at some point and if they do they tend to be decent fish and you can do a big weight, if they don’t it can be a struggle. Anyway out with a banded 8 mm to the 7 mtr line and start plugging away. Well it wasn’t fast and furious but after half an hour I was off the mark with a bream. Dai had made the best start out of all of us though with 3 or 4 carp in the net after an hour. A carp was next up for me just after the hour, not a big fish at around 8lbs but welcome none the less and that was soon joined by another bream. Dave Wall came down for a chat, unfortunately for him it was a full house today so he hadn’t been able to fish but had stayed on to watch and top lad that he is even went back to his motor to make me another coffee. :thumbsup:

It really wasn’t happening for us though down in the Little Lake and when Dave returned with the coffee word was filtering down that people were starting to catch up in the Big Lake including The Minx which was worrying along with Kev and Dave the Fish. After Dave had drunk his coffee he said that he was going to have a stroll round before heading home, so I took the opportunity to give him a run down on my camera and sent him off to take a few shots for this blog and after taking one of me ……​

He soon caught Geoff landing what looked to be a weigher and heading off toward the weigh station ……​

So the next bit is the story of Dave’s stroll around the lake with my camera. Ade (Slim Shady) was having a quiet time on peg 6 …….​


but round on peg 7 Dave Moore was having a better time of it battling a carp ……​


eventually getting it safely in the net ……​


Paul Roberts was having a slightly less hectic time on peg 8 which rather sums up his performance so far in this years series……​


Steve Wilson was on peg 9 and hoping to put one over The Jinx ……​


who was on the next peg and suffering one of his quieter matches at Rolfs , or was it that he was just missing Julie? ……​


Tucked away on peg 13 was Nick W-P (monkey) trying to tempt a fish from the margin.​


Tony Robert was working hard on peg 16 but obviously had one eye on what The Minx was doing on peg 18 ……​


and it was plain to see that the rumours of impending Minxings were true as there she was with a nice Mirror that she’d just weighed……​


Round on the car park bank Kev was into more action on the feeder and obviously doing the business today……​


and it looked like the car park bank could be the place to be today ……​


with Mat on peg 28 landing a Mirror right on time to have a picture taken with it ……​


While Simps and Clive were having a bit of a head to head battle on pegs 30 and 32 ……​


and as he made his way back he even managed to capture that rarest of events… Paul landing a carp over on peg 8……​


As he arrived back I lifted into a carp which powered of and as he tried to get a photo I suffered the curse of my own camera, the fish shedding the hook and the rig flying back. Almost immediately though there was a splash as while Nick was feeding his peg a carp made off with his pole before he could react……​


Luckily for Nick though the fish made it’s way over to Dai’s peg where Dai saved the day and retrieved the pole with the fish still attached. Nick finally landed the fish which wouldn’t count to find that it was an 18½lb’er. Dave said his farewells and left us to it. I’d had a couple more carp and another bream while he’d been strolling around the lake but sport still hadn’t picked up and most were struggling for a bite and Neil had even given the pellet wag a go in an effort to find something to no avail.

With time marching on it was time to take another look down the margin but all I was getting were bites from little roach so I shortened up one of the pencil rigs to fish the bottom of the shelf around 4 feet out from the bank but had to wait a further 15 minutes for the float to bury. A decent fish powered off determined to go and see Neil on peg 2, then disaster struck, the dacron in the top kit parted meaning I lost not only the fish but the rig and elastic as well.

I shortened up the other pencil rig to match the first and went back out and was soon rewarded with another bite, another decent fish that seemed to take an age to get in but land it I did, a Mirror of 15½lbs that was hooked outside the mouth explaining why I’d had so much trouble controlling it. The worrying thing was that the sky was becoming a darker grey as the match drew to a close. Another decent fish put in an appearance and I was just on my way back from the weigh station when the heavens opened, luckily I had my umbrella ready and was soon huddled under it as it poured down. I managed another couple of carp as the rain persisted but as I slid the second one into the net the All-Out was called.

There’s nothing worse than packing away your kit in the rain, but it had to be done. I thought I had around 80 lbs and was hopeful that it would be worth some decent section points but it was hard to tell how others had done. I got the kit back to the car just as the rain eased off as is always the way and soon had it loaded up and back in the car before going to the Weigh-In.

As usual it started on peg 34 where Terry had just 25 lbs to show for his efforts. Geoff weighed 52½lbs and my fish came to a level 89 lbs. Nick W had 87¾lbs and Neil 88 lbs. Dai beat us all with 97 lbs to take the section as Ade had just 65 lbs on peg 6. Onto B section where Dave Moore had 72 lbs and Paul R 31½lbs. Steve had managed 71¼lbs from peg 9 while on peg 10 The Jinx had suffered his own curse to take just 21 lbs 14ozs. Nick W-P had taken 42 lbs from peg 32 to finish off the first part of the section. Fred kicked off C section with 64 lbs followed by Tony R with 60½lbs. Gem obviously had suffered a quiet second half as The Minx Mark was set at 44¾lbs. Round to the car park bank where Kev had a decent day recording 95 lbs followed by Dave C with 79¼lbs and Budgie just 28 lbs and Mat tied with Dave C on 79¼lbs. The final part of C section was finished off by Simon with 108 lbs and Clive with 100 lbs exactly.

Back to the hut for the results and the winner today was Simon with Clive in second and third going to Dai. The section winners were Simon, Dai and Kev.
The Minx claimed 5 victims today including her Dad (The Jinx) and I collected a Golden Nugget from Neil and Gem.

The next Jinx Match is August 18th when the sections get redrawn for the second half of the series and it’ll be interesting to see how those sections work out as it will probably decide who’s in with a chance of taking the title this year.​

Overall Result

Names in Pink are those that were “MINXED”


Location: Holton, Oxfordshire OX33, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Rockells Farm. Saffron Walden. Essex. July 22nd, 2012.

Marsh AC club match.


Once again it’s Rockells Farm in Essex that is the venue for the Marsh AC match today. It’s renowned as a bagging water, in fact it’s where Martin Hucker set the clubs best ever match weight of 383 lbs 04ozs back in 2009 so it’s a venue that we always look forward to fishing. However I’d heard from a couple of people recently that it wasn’t producing like it had in the past. Was the reason down to the terrible weather we’ve experienced recently or had something changed? We would find out today.

I met up with Dave at his house at around 6·45 am to follow down to the venue. It was already a pleasant morning with the promise of a warm sunny day ahead as we set off , but Dave must have been using his Beatles Sat Nav as we went on a Magical Mystery Tour of Stanstead Airport and the surrounding villages before we arrived at the venue car park around 8 am. Everyone was looking forward to this one and a few of the lads soon had it pegged out while Dave sorted out the money and organised the draw. Peg 14 was mine for the day, pretty much where I’d drawn last year and with plenty of water today hopefully it would produce better sport. Turning left from the car park with my kit I found Eddie, Al, Vic and Kev on the first 4 pegs. My peg was actually the one Simon had last year while Dave had the flyer on the point then Zack and Clive was back on his peg last year. Elsewhere John had peg 1 with Simon on 2 and Martin had run to his peg having drawn peg 3 the same peg he’d broken the club match record on in 2009.​


Settling into the peg I couldn’t help noticing a couple of things. The first was the water colour or lack of it, it had that somewhat slate grey appearance that you normally see when the first frosts knock the colour out of the water, and the second thing was that there didn’t appear to be any signs of fish moving. Rockells is so heavily stocked that the fish are always competing for food, colouring up the water and you normally see tail patterns and swirls along with cruising fish as you set up, but hardly anything was showing ….. Very Strange.

The venue is that prolific that the match format is slightly different from our usual in that we have two, three hour matches with a weigh -in after each to avoid keeping too many fish in keepnets for long periods and to make things easier for the scales men. Rigs are simple and strong as you’re looking to catch on a top 2 from the margins to do a really big weight and as such were just 0.3 NG Edger’s on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to a size 16 Kamasan B911X for pellet and size 12′s for paste. Bait for today was just 6 mm hard pellets and strawberry GOT Atomic paste. With a bit of time before the start Kev strolled down with a coffee and a freshly cooked bacon and sausage roll which set me up nicely for the start.

10 am saw the All-in called and some pellets were fed into both margins and right away alarm bells rang again as I could see them fall through the first 12-18 inches of water which is really unusual as the water is normally so coloured. I banded a 6 mm and dropped it into the left hand margin, the float dipped and a lift produced a 1oz roach, not what I was looking for. Now normally at the start of the matches here you start to hear splashing as people are landing carp straight away but today it was very quiet, nobody was into fish straight away.

10 minutes in and I had my first carp, but it was an 8oz stockie, absolutely mint which still had the curtain in its mouth intact, definitely not what’s expected at Rockells. I’d like to say it got better but it didn’t. Dave strolled round expressing surprise that nothing was coming to floaters and he strolled down the bank and returned with news that Al and Vic were struggling to put any fish together along with everyone else. I’d added a couple of sections to try further out but after a couple of hours just had another 3 stockies and a few roach added to my catch so took a stroll looking for some inspiration. Kev was fishing a feeder but was in the same predicament as the rest of us……​


Strolling down to Al he was trying his margins, but all the while we chatted he didn’t have a single bite yet alone a fish……​


Vic was totally disheartened with the lack of fish as well and it was fast becoming obvious that all was not well……​


I strolled back up to see Clive and it was the same story at his peg, just the odd stockie and roach showing, Zack was fairing no better, but Dave was getting the odd stockie from the margins and this was probably due to the fact that he only fed floaters at the start so didn’t overfeed the swim……​


John was on peg 1 and was getting a few, but nowhere near the quantity expected ……​


Just before 1pm Dave strolled down with another coffee and bacon and sausage roll for me and with no sign of any improvement we cancelled the first weigh -in and decided to fish straight through. Meanwhile over on peg 9 Ken had managed to connect with a decent sized carp and after carefully playing it had it safely in the net and weighed at 11¼lbs before returning it . I heard that Tony was getting a few but couldn’t really see him although I could see Keith who was having the odd fish……​


Vic had decided that he’d had enough in the meantime and tipped back and gone home , and I have to admit that the idea had crossed my mind as well.
Around 2pm there was one hell of a splash from Kev’s peg, he’d tripped and lost his footing as he returned to his peg and gone straight in, by the time I got round to see if he was alright he was back on the bank and draining out and declined my invitation to get back in so I could get a photo……​


Meanwhile over on peg 8 Graham had hooked into something that was capable of stretching his elastic as he was fortunate enough to latch onto a decent carp……​


I kept searching the swim adding sections exploring further out but to no real effect as no matter where I tried it just produced the odd stockie or tiny roach and it was a blessed relief when the All-Out was called at 4pm.

I really couldn’t wait to get the kit packed away and the weigh-in had to be one of the quickest in the clubs recent history. on our bank Eddie had 7¼lbs, Al 10¾lbs and Kev had 6¾lbs. My few fish made 9lbs. Dave had the best weight on our bank with 19½lbs, Zack had a meagre 3½lbs and Clive ended with 11½lbs.

The owner appeared while we were weighing in and when I asked him about the lack of fish he was adamant that no fish had been lost or netted and no stockies had been introduced, but I’m afraid that I do not believe that to be the truth and as a result of what we experienced today I think it’s fair to say that we as a club will not be returning to Rockells any time soon.:nono:

Back at the car park the results were soon sorted John taking the win today with just 41¼lbs, Tony was second with 32 lbs and Mick’s 31¼lbs gave him third place and the MK Nugget. The sections went to John, Ken, Al and Dave. Next up for the club is The Reservoir at Hartleylands Farm and hopefully a better days fishing for all.​

Location: Elmdon, Essex, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Rolf’s Lake. Holton. Oxfordshire. July 28th-29th, 2012.
Rolf’s Pairs Tournament 2012.


This weekend I’m travelling back to Rolfs Lake once more for the annual Rolfs Pairs Tournament. I normally fish Dave Collier’s Friday match the day before, but this year I wasn’t able to get Friday off. so it was an early start around 6 am to try and avoid the Olympic road closures that would be in place. I couldn’t avoid the closures as it happened, but the early start meant very light traffic and it was just after 7·30 am when I arrived at the car park at Rolfs. It was already packed as the vast majority had been there since Friday having fished Dave’s match.

As usual Dave Moore was one of the early birds and was up and about and kindly made me a coffee as we discussed the prospects for the two days to come and he filled me in on how it had fished on the Friday. All this as he tied up some fresh rigs for the day ahead, I have to say that Dave deserves a prize for his preparation as he can always be found tying up fresh rigs on the morning of a match.

As usual some were pitching tents for an overnight stay, most notably Steve Wilson who’d arrived with his latest purchase that looked more of a Big Top than a bivvie and seemed to be minus the instructions which caused some chuckles as we watched him trying to erect it……


Chatting away to Tony and a couple of the other lads I asked Tony if he was ready for the New Pairs format, and when he asked what that was I explained that a pair drew a single peg and one fished to the left and the other to the right ................... the bite was spectacular till everyone's laughter gave the game away.:roflmao:

I’d decided that as I was staying for just one night I would be sleeping in the car rather than go through all the palaver of pitching a bivvie so spent a bit of time catching up with people including Paul’s wife Jayne who had come down for the weekend with their new puppy Hector……


The pleasing thing to see was just how well the lake looked, two weeks previously when I was down the banks resembled a muddy swamp in places, but a week of sun and a lot of hard work by John and his team had dried it out and got it looking good again.

By 11·30 am people were assembled outside the fishery hut as the draw for the weekends pairings took place and they worked out like this ……


So with that done and out of the way it was time for the Day 1 draw for pegs. Jon my partner for the weekend came away with peg 35, one that sees very little use in matches and when I drew peg 10 I wasn’t to happy myself, as with peg 11 in as well I wasn’t expecting great things from it today especially as it hadn’t been fished yesterday. Collecting my kit I made my way round to my peg and on the way struck my usual side bet of a Golden Nugget with Dave Wall on peg 25 and Gem on peg 18.


Arriving at the peg I found that I had Budgie for company on peg 11 and Terry P on peg 9. More worrying for Budgie and I was the large raft of scum that was covering our pegs that was sure to make presentation difficult.


’ve simplified my approach at Rolfs this year and today would be no different, just 3 rigs all for 5 mtr lines, one straight out, another to the edge of the bush on the right hand side and the third for down the left hand margin. The first two were Nick Gilbert’s handmade 0·5g Power Pencils that were made up on 0·21 Ultima power match with size 14 Guru MWG’s to finish off with while the margin rig was a 0.3 NG Edger again on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to a size 14 Guru MWG. Bait was a mix of 4 and 6 mm fishery pellets for feed and 6, 8 and 11 mm hard pellets along with some Got Baits atomic paste and corn.

With plenty of time before the All-In I went for a stroll to see how others were doing. I could see that Webbo down on peg 7 was holding court and extolling the merits of “The Feederless Feeder” to an interested audience……


Gem was setting up on peg 18 and with fiancée Simon just a couple of pegs away on peg 16 would be looking to hand out a few Minxings today……


A few had gathered round by the hut getting a last minute drink and trying to work out what the match had in store for all of us ……


The big shock came when I got round to Malc on peg 39, he had virtually all of his pole assembled, this is a sight that’s beyond rare as he just doesn’t do more than 5 mtrs and that’s considered long for Malc as he’s happiest just fishing a top kit, surely he was trying to fool those around him ……


Back at my peg and with the wind blowing into us Budgie and I were resigned to fighting the scum as John called the All-In at 2 pm. I had soaked down some of my feed pellets and it was these that I fed down the margin and to the end of the bush before cupping a pot of mixed pellet and corn out to 5 mtrs in front and following it out with a banded 8 mm. It was a slow start however with no real action, but Terry G over on peg 32 was off to a flyer with a carp straight away ……


Next up came Steve on peg 8 with a weigher of around 17 lbs and when Webbo followed up a few minutes later with an 18½lb’er I was starting to fear the worst. However my float soon slipped away and after a brief struggle a common of around 7 lbs was soon in the net to get me off the mark. This was soon followed by one of the bream that show more nowadays and another small carp which made me feel a lot better.

Club mate John (tutu) Holdsworth had fished yesterday and had stopped over to watch the action today and take a few pictures and he was on hand when the shout of YEEEEEESSSSSSSSS went out, Never a good sound to hear early in a match as it signifies that The Minx is off the mark and worries a lot of the other anglers around the lake ……


Simon wasn’t one of those today though as he was back on peg 16, the peg he’d had 315 lbs from a couple of weeks ago and while he would be hard pushed to beat that today, he was starting to put a few fish together……


I was struggling, Terry P on peg 9 had started catching and it seemed as if he was blocking any fish from coming my way as nothing was coming from the left for either Budgie or Kev on peg 13. Dave Wall was having a bit of a hard time of it up on peg 25, he’s spent a fair few matches on that part of the lake and I was sure that he would rather have been elsewhere on the lake……


As the match wore on Terry G was still picking up the odd fish from peg 32 and Simon Watkins on peg 29 was starting to get a bit of action……


That left Scott between them on peg 31 facing a real struggle with just a couple of small silvers in his net to show for his efforts……


News was starting to filter through from the Little Lake that Ant was starting to get among a few decent fish on peg 6 while Jon on un-fancied peg 35 was also starting to find a few, as was Keith fishing the feeder down on peg 38 ……


Just after halfway through Terry P on peg 9 stopped catching and as if on cue I started catching with a couple of weighers and a bream coming my way in double quick time. A couple of foul hookers didn’t help matters but by taking my time and keeping some feed trickling in they didn’t cause to much disruption and I even managed to land one of them at 13 lbs……


Budgie had managed to get in on the act as well fishing paste and although he lost a couple of foul hookers he was rewarded with an absolute belter of a Common that tipped the scales at 22 lbs, a new PB for him and one I was happy to photograph……


My peg seemed to get stronger as the match drew to a close with another 5 weighers and I hooked one final fish just as John called the All-Out at 7 pm which I safely landed around four minutes later. Packing my kit away I was actually pretty happy with how my match had gone in the end after my initial misgivings before the start and felt sure I’d managed 100 lbs+. I had already decided to leave my kit behind the peg tonight, not that I wanted to draw it again tomorrow, but it was just easier than taking it back to the car park.

Word was already circulating that Ant would be the one to beat as he’d had a good day on peg 6 and Webbo was looking pretty happy with his efforts from peg 7 as we made our way round to peg 34 to start the Weigh-In. Bazza hadn’t really got to grips with peg 34 with just over 23 lbs but my Pairs partner Jon had a creditable 88 lbs 7ozs from 35. Nick had a mare on 37 and recorded a DNW as Keith weighed 89 lbs 7ozs from 38. Malc took 66 lbs 9ozs from 39……


Paul could only manage 27 lbs 2ozs from peg 1 and Dai had 52½lbs from peg 3 to edge out Geoff’s 47 lbs 9oz from peg 4. Ant had indeed had a decent day recording a fine 202 lbs 13ozs from 6 and Webbo managed 135 lbs 6ozs on peg 7. Steak chipped in with 62 lbs 15ozs from 7 and Terry P 36 lbs 15ozs on peg 9. My fish came to a total of 125 lbs 7ozs followed by Budgie with 66 lbs 13ozs and Kev’s 18¼lbs……


Tony had a level 87 lbs and Simon took a fine 189¾lbs. The Minx’s first fish had proved to be a solitary individual as her 9 lbs 10ozs showed, leaving a lot of very relieved anglers. Al’s 65 lbs 13ozs and Dave Collier’s 36 lbs 15ozs led onto Paul who was only the second angler to suffer a Minxing today when he came up a couple of ounces short with just 9½lbs. Steve had 94¼lbs from peg 23 while Dave Wall managed 34½lbs from peg 25 and Dave Moore had 41 lbs 9ozs from 26. Clive had 72¾lbs and Simon Watkins 47 lbs. Scott had managed 3 small carp late on to avoid a Minxing with 17 lbs and Terry G was last to weigh with 84 lbs 3ozs.

Back at the hut the post-mortem on the days events started as we waited for the scores to be posted and I collected a Golden Nugget from Gem and Dave . Individually today Ant had taken the win, with Simon second and Webbo third. Finally the scores from the day appeared on the board and it was surprisingly close with………

……Tony and Simon leading on 10 points, just one ahead of Jon and I along with Steve and Keith tied on 11 points.

While the results were mulled over Malc returned to his peg with Liam who had a go with dad’s tackle and promptly had a carp himself……

Some decided to barbecue some food, but Dave Moore and I set off for the Harvester with Al and Keith for a meal before returning later on for a chat and a drink with the rest which was still going on when when I left them to it and climbed into my sleeping bag around 1am. :sleep2:

Day 2. Sunday 29th July.

At around 6·30 am a sharp knock on the car window woke me from my slumbers to find Dave Moore grinning like the Cheshire Cat. It transpired that Steak had awoken early for a call of nature and as he was in situ his van had locked itself with his keys and everything else inside. Dave being Dave had decided that Steak’s misfortune was to good to keep to himself and he needed an accomplice to help with the micky taking. By pure chance the bolt on the bottom of the back door hadn’t locked, so with twenty stone of Yorkshireman (Dave) persuading it to open a bit and Terry P with a bit of wire, Steak’s keys were rescued, but it made for a fun start to the day……


With bodies rising from their various sleeping quarters a few of us decided that breakfast was called for, meaning that we ended up at The Harvester and after Webbo had played Thunderbirds and rescued Paul’s van with a jump start we were back at the lake in time for the draw which was early as we were fishing from 12 till 5 pm today.

Into the draw bag for me and it’s peg 32 today, happy with that, Jon my partner had peg 13, not a good draw as Kev had struggled there yesterday and it didn’t bode well for us in the pairs but we’d try our best. So round to collect my kit and get ready. 32 is an end peg and I’d got Kevin to my right on peg 31 while Terry G was opposite me again on peg 9 with Simon Watkins on 10 and Dai on 11.


Setting up was just a case of adjusting the depths on yesterdays rigs as I’d be concentrating on just two lines today, one at 5 mtrs out to the left of peg 9 and the second over the back of the bush in the left hand margin using the same baits as yesterday. With a bit of time to kill Dave Wall came down for a chat as he was on peg 23 today and keen to finally take a Golden Nugget back off of me, we would have to see about that later on as I fancied my chances of taking yet another yam yam Nugget today…


At Midday John signalled the All-In and after feeding some wetted down pellets over the back of the bush I fed a pot of mixed pellets and corn at 5 mtrs and followed it out with a banded 6 mm and after a couple of lift and drops the float buried and I was into my first carp of the day, a mirror of around 7 lbs to get me off the mark.

I have to admit that I feared that fishing from 12-5pm would mean that fish would be hard to come by early on as they normally tend to feed late at this time of the year but that didn’t seem to be the case today as most seemed to pick up fish early doors. I picked up another carp, a weigher this time and the obligatory bream before a foul hooker went mental in the swim before shedding the hook and killed it for a while.

Terry G had started to get some action over on peg 9……


And Simon had got of to a good start over on peg 10 with a decent weigher but then suffered a blank period which I felt was down to the fact that he was fishing further out past the area that I’d fed yesterday ……


YEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSS had been heard from down on peg 3 and I felt that a few Minxings could be on the cards today as Gem would be determined to have a better day today……


Things were starting to look up for me again as the bites returned at 5 mtrs with another couple of net fish and another weigher and although I had another couple of foul hookers they swam well clear of the swim before the rig had come flying back on both occasions. Ant had drawn peg 7 today and was enjoying a head to head with Simon over on peg 34 and looking to get one over him again ……


Malc had moved one peg to 38 today but was having no joy at all and struggling to tempt as much as a bite from there today……


while Simon had suffered a torrid start to the match with a number of fish escaping through the bush in the right hand margin of peg 34 while Clive seemed to be finding some fish on peg 35 ……


Back on the Big lake I could see Webbo up on peg 38 and today his “Feederless Feeder” hadn’t worked for him forcing him into fishing the pole and it has to be said that he didn’t look as he was having a lot of joy with that……


Looking up the car park bank it didn’t seem to be going to well for most there either…


especially Al who’d broken the tip of his pellet waggler rod and smashed a top kit as well today, meaning it was turning into an expensive weekend as he’d broken a number 5 on the Friday as well and to add insult to injury Tony was catching better from the bush between their two swims that they were both targeting. The final straw was probably Tony catching a 14 lb weigher less than a minute after Al had weighed and returned it to his peg.

With a couple of hours left I took a look over the back of the bush and the float buried straight away, a weigher at 12lbs and the next 2 put ins produced fish of 13 and 14lbs. Meanwhile on peg 8 Keith was starting to catch a few as well, obviously the coaching session that he’d had with Andy May at Cudmore on Thursday was starting to pay dividends ……


With about an hour to go Kev was really struggling but a few words of advice from John Bennett saw him finally start to find some fish to save his day. I just kept alternating between my two swims which saw me catching regularly right up till the end of the match when John called the All-Out at 5 pm. Packing away my kit I was happy enough with my day as I was sure that I had around 150 lbs to show for my efforts and thankfully with the car so close I soon had my kit packed away before the Weigh-In started.

Simon kicked things off on peg 34 with 78 lbs 10ozs followed by Clive’s 60 lbs 11ozs and Steak’s 21 lbs 14ozs but on 38 Malc suffered with a DNW much to daughter Gem’s delight. Steve had 34 lbs 7ozs and Nick 29 lbs 10ozs before Gem set The Minx Mark with a much improved 52 lbs 1oz today. Terry P fell victim with 45 lbs 15ozs while Scott suffered another mare on 6 with just 8 lbs 5ozs. Ant had another good match with 139 lbs followed by Keith with 88 lbs 11ozs. Terry had 83 lbs 1oz. Simon 57½lbs and Dai 42½lbs while my partner Jon took 59 lbs 6ozs from peg 13 ……


Dave Collier had 37 lbs 6ozs while Budgie managed a creditable 91 lbs 11ozs from peg 16 while Webbo had just 34 lbs 6ozs for his efforts today. Geoff had 56 lbs and Bazza 12½lbs while Paul managed a slightly better 30¼lbs from peg 22 today. Dave Wall weighed in with 37 lbs and Tony had won his peg to peg battle with Al by 114 lbs 2ozs to 57 lbs 10ozs. Paul had 44 lbs and Dave Moore 37¾lbs.


Kevin mustered 27¼lbs and I was last to weigh in with a level 166 lbs.

Webbo and Dave Collier retired to work out the Pairs results while the banter got into full swing around the hut. I had taken the Individual win today with Ant in second and Tony third. Ant had managed to draw level with Simps on 18 matches each in their long running duel and I collected another Golden Nugget from Dave Wall and Gem. Gem was happy enough though with 15 additions to The Minx List today including a first time entrant in Dave Wall and sweetest of all, her Dad once more.


Finally the two Dave’s returned with the all important Pairs results to be read out, and the trophies awarded by Mr Maggotdrowning himself , Dave(Webbo)Webster to the winning team of………..

Tony Roberts & Simon Mound


Congratulations to them both, maintaining their 1 point lead from day 1 to take victory from Jon Hatch and myself, no complaints as they caught 30 lbs more over the 2 matches to prove worthy winners, In Tony’s case for the Third Time.

Finally a few words of Thanks are due to the following people……… John, Pauline & Ollie for once again allowing us the use of their superb fishery over the weekend.
Dave Webster, for bringing us all and Dave Collier for organising the whole weekend.
Finally, to all those Maggotdrowners that took part, It’s you that make the weekend the success it is. :thumbsup:

Pairs Result


Saturday Individual

Sunday Individual

Location: Holton, Oxfordshire OX33, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Hartleylands Farm Fishery. The Reservoir. August 11th, 2012.

Marsh AC club match.


I’m off down to Hartleylands Farm just outside the village of Cranbrook in Kent today for the seventh match of the Marsh AC year. It’s a match that I really look forward to fishing as it’s one of my favourite waters with the potential for a cracking days sport. An early start was in order as I was meeting a few of the lads for breakfast at The Knoxbridge Café and with the promise of some decent weather for today it didn’t take long to get the gear loaded into the car and set off. A nice smooth drive down saw me pulling into the car park at around 7·30 am just as Al and Keith Powell who was guesting today arrived. Kevin and Jean were already there along with Keith and Mick who’d made their usual trip down from Milton Keynes and Rusty who was also guesting today and we were soon joined by John, Martin and Zack. With the pangs of hunger taken care of by a Knoxbridge Special it was time to get up to the fishery for the draw, but not before Keith Powell noticed Keith’s wallet that had dropped on the floor by his seat and phoned him to let him know he had it.

Arriving at the draw most of the usual suspects were in attendance along with our third guest today Mick the Chippy who I struck a side bet of a Golden Nugget with as usual. Dave soon had the monies collected and the draw underway. Peg 25 proved to be mine today, a short stroll from the car park and shaded by trees. Kev had peg 29 and it looked good for a few today while Mick the Chippy was next up on 28 with Rusty to my left on 26 and Mick W next up on peg 23.​


Settling into the peg it was time to decide how to approach it. I’d considered fishing the pellet wag today but with the wind blowing from right to left across the peg it was going to be very awkward, so although I set one up I was pretty sure that it wasn’t going to figure. Instead it was going to be 3 pole rigs, one at 5 mtrs straight out with another for the willow to my right and a third for the left hand willow. The first two were once again Nick Gilbert’s handmade 0·5g Power Pencils that were made up on 0·21 Ultima power match with size 14 Guru MWG’s to finish off with while the third rig was a 0.3 NG Edger again on 0·21 Ultima power match straight through to a size 14 Guru MWG. Bait was 4 and 6 mm pellet for feed along with some hemp while hook bait would be 8 mm hard pellet with some GOT Atomic paste if I needed it.

Kev provided a cup of coffee courtesy of Jean when he popped down for a chat and Dave called the All-In at 10 am and I fed a couple of handfuls of hemp and pellets to the two willow swims and a handful of pellet straight out at 5 mtrs before following them out with a banded 8 mm to 5 mtrs. I could hear that Rusty was in almost straight away but I was being plagued by sharp bites that I couldn’t connect with and I suspected that these were from roach snatching at the 8 mm pellet and this was confirmed when I landed one of around 6ozs that had somehow managed to engulf the pellet. Thankfully my first carp of the day was soon on its way, the carp in the reservoir give a good account of themselves with the deep water encouraging them to keep their heads down and making you work to get their heads up and into the net but after a spirited fight a nice mirror of around 8 lbs was safely in the keepnet.

You couldn’t class the sport as fast and furious though and the general banter around the lake made it obvious that most were struggling after around an hour, apart that is from Kev who was into a steady run of fish and Mick the Chippy if the rumours were to be believed. I was picking up the odd carp on my 5 mtr line but looks over at both willow swims were producing nothing apart from the odd roach and skimmer. Rusty had taken a few carp fishing shallow but they weren’t really having it either and gradually faded away.

By 12·30 pm I had around 6 carp and a few silvers to show for my efforts so took a little stroll to see how others were doing on my bank. Mick W reckoned that he’d had a few but seemed to be doing OK to me judging by the amount of elastic coming from his top two as he played a carp and it was obvious that he had hopes of taking the MK Nugget from Keith today……​


but the pegs in the early twenties didn’t seem to be producing as I would have expected them to. However over on the other side the one person that did seem to be getting among a few was Terry and with the wind blowing into the margins there I fancied that he had the chance of a good weight on the cards today ……​


Back down on peg 29 Kev was enjoying himself taking a succession of fish from under the willow to his left……​


Mick was enjoying himself as always but had suffered with a few lost fish in the course of the morning and looking to up his catch rate ……​


and while Rusty was his usual jovial self, with his shallow line having dried up was looking to explore other lines in an effort to put a few more in the net……​


Back at my peg it was just a question of keeping some feed trickling into the three lines and waiting for some fish to turn up, which I was certain would happen at some point given the head of fish present in the water. Dave the Fish popped round for a stroll and it obviously wasn’t going well for him and you could sense his frustration with not being able to get to grips with things today. As the afternoon wore on things did start picking up for me. I had to rotate round the three lines, but by doing this I started to pick up carp on a regular basis, nothing big, most were around the 4-5 lbs mark but good weight builders if you can keep them coming.

Others weren’t so fortunate and I could hear Al bemoaning the fact that he couldn’t reach the spot where he felt the fish were in his swim ……​


Things had picked up a bit for Tony, but he’d still found time to pop along and check out what Keith Powell was doing on peg 13 as it was obviously starting to produce for him ……​


Keith was having one of those matches that we all dread, putting a few fish together but having to watch travelling companion Mick W catching just a few more which would surely result in the loss of an MK Nugget today……​


My afternoon was then rudely interrupted by a pain in the neck .......... I’d been stung by a bee. Fortunately Rusty came to my aid and removed the sting with the aid of a pair of styl pliers, ad hoc surgery at its finest which allowed me to resume fishing again. Things seemed to pick up for most as the match drew to a close, unfortunately not for Dave who had to suffer more frustration as Tony on the next peg found a late run of fish to save his day while Dave got seen off by a couple of foul hookers.

The All-Out was called at 4 pm and with a set of scales on our side Kevin and I decided to get the weigh-in underway before packing up. We started with Rod on peg 19 who put 26½lbs on the scales followed by Simon with 79½lbs. Next up was Graham with 33 lbs and Chris with 36¾lbs. Mick W recorded 94¾lbs and my 19 carp with a few silvers weighed 114½lbs. Rusty had managed 96¾lbs but Mick the Chippy had suffered a frustrating second half to his match with just 36½lbs meaning a Golden Nugget was coming my way. Finally Kevin put his fish onto the scales and recorded 132½lbs and a new PB Match Weight……​


Time to pack away the kit and get back to the car park where Dave worked out the results and sorted out the section money. First today was Terry with a fine 163½lbs, Kevin had secured second place and I had finished in third. Today’s sections had gone to Al, Terry, Mick W and Kevin to bring an enjoyable day to a close.

The next club match is at Colemans Cottage on September 15th, but we also have a midweek match at Alders Farm a couple of days before that which Keith has kindly organised for us, so plenty to look forward to.​


Location: Cranbrook, Kent, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Rolf's Lake. Holton. Oxfordshire. August 18th, 2012.

The Jinx Series 2012
Match 4


It’s back down to Rolfs Lake today for the 4th match of this year’s Jinx Series . With the Series reaching its halfway point there will be a fresh draw for the sections on the final three matches today which could have a big say in deciding the outcome of the Series so there will be a few anxious anglers come draw time. A peak out of the window today confirmed that it promised to be a scorcher today so having fed the cats and loaded the kit I made an early start. Things went horribly wrong when I reached Battersea however when I found the Café where I usually stop for breakfast closed totally throwing my pre match preparations into disarray, so back into the car and off to Rolfs with a quick stop at Asda’s for a couple of wraps to sustain me which meant that I arrived at the lake around 9 am.

A few of the lads were already there having fished the Friday Night Match, and chatting to Malc it seemed that it had fished hard and the general consensus seemed to be that it was going to be more of the same today. The fresh draw for sections today seemed to have ensured that most were there in good time, however three were missing today, Dave Moore, Geoff Palmer and Ade Williams meaning they would have to take their chances on which section was drawn for them, however it did give Michael Corsini and Paul Jay the opportunity to fish today.

Meanwhile Gem had been to Asda’s and returned with Cornetto’s for all. Thanks Gem, much appreciated and it went down a treat. Next up was one of those events that you only see in a Jinx Match, Paul received The Pink Hat much to everyone's amusement with a photo being immediately posted on Facebook for Paul’s wife Jayne to see ……​


So around Noon Malc called the draw. I got in early and got peg 24 in C section for my troubles. It hadn’t been fished last night so wouldn’t have had any bait, but at least it would be shaded on the car park bank for most of the match. Side bets of a Golden Nugget were struck with Neil, Gem and Michael and having collected my kit I made my way to the peg. For company in the section I had Nick Williams on peg 28 and Michael on peg 26 (fishing for Ade) while on peg 22 was Nick W-P. Opposite on peg 18 was Paul with Neil on 16 and Budgie on 14 completing C section.​


The rigs today were all freshly tied and were my favourite Nick Gilbert handmade Power Pencils in 0·5g and 0·4g sizes that were made up on 0·21 Ultima power match with size 14 Guru MWG’s to finish off to cover a 5 mtr line, the bottom of the slope at the end of the right hand bush and a third in front of the platform on empty peg 25. I also set up a bomb rod to fish a banded pellet out by the aerator. Bait was a mix of 4 and 6 mm fishery pellets for feed with about 3 pints of them wetted down and 6, 8 and 11 mm hard pellets along with some GOT Baits paste and corn for the hook.​


At 2 pm the All-In was called and with all three lines fed it was out to the aerator with a banded 8 mm on the bomb rod to see if I could nick an early fish. It was not to be, however Paul had an early fish over on peg 18 on the pellet wag before taking a look with the pole ……​


…… and it looked as if Tony down on peg 32 had some early action as well, but it was Simon on peg 8 who had got off to the best start storming into an early lead with 5 fish.

20 minutes on the bomb hadn’t produced as much as a knock for me so out to 5 mtrs with a banded 8 mm as there were a few signs of fish over the feed. It really wasn’t happening though for most of us in the Big Lake today and it was starting to look like it would be a real struggle for most and in fact an hour had passed when Neil called over to me asking if I’d had any bites and as I replied ‘No’ the float slid away !!!! Straight away I could feel that the fish was foul hooked as I struggled to control it, however slow steady pressure saw me prevail and finally slide a Mirror tail first over the net and at 11½lbs I was off the mark. The next bite produced a similar result and produced an 11 lb’er, but young Michael wasn’t quite so impressed as he’d suffered with a couple of foul hookers but hadn’t managed to get them into the net which led to plenty of banter between the two of us.​


Over the course of the next hour or so a couple of net fish put in an appearance for me to keep things ticking over but the next bite saw a fish power off and in all honesty all I could do was hang on as this fish gave the gear a real work out. I finally managed to get a look at it after around 5 minutes, a big common which appeared to be hooked in the pectoral fin before it charged off again. Of course Michael was full of encouragement and seemed genuinely delighted when I managed to slide the landing net under it, even more so when the scales on the weigh station registered a weight of 19½lbs.

Landing the fish had taken a while though and it had ploughed through the swim wreaking havoc, so I re-fed and took a short stroll to see how others were doing. Tony was up on peg 32 and it looked like he’d had a reasonably good start to the match, but it turned out that he’d suffered with foul hookers and had lost a few fish so was now taking a look down his right hand margin ……​


Simon was nowhere to be seen, but he was having such a good match that he’d gone off to get another keepnet. However Simon’s good fortune meant that he was stopping the fish coming round to peg 9 and Malc was suffering a real grueller of a match ……​


Clive seemed to be suffering a similar fate on peg 10 with no fish coming round from the right and Paul Jay on peg 13 seeming to stop the fish moving round from the left as he appeared to be catching better than most on the Big Lake……​


I could see that The Minx was down on peg 38, but it didn’t look it was happening for her either, though it was one of those pegs where the fish can turn up at any time, meaning she could still be a danger as the match wore on ……​


Fred was trying his best on peg 34, but yet again it didn’t seem to be producing the goods today, and that seemed to be the story for most……​


Back at my peg there was a bit of fizzing on the 5 mtr line to offer some encouragement and the next hour and a half produced another 5 net fish to keep things ticking over for me and Nick W on peg 28 started to put a few together to put pressure on Michael who was still suffering frustrations with foul hookers. The last hour cost me however as I just couldn’t buy a bite from any of my lines while Neil over on peg 16 started to put a run of fish together ……​


and Paul added a couple of decent fish late on as well, along with Budgie getting in on the action over on peg 14 ……​


7 pm saw the All-Out called leaving me frustrated, as I’d hoped for a decent last hour, but it hadn’t happened and I felt that it had cost me the section, the Weigh-In would tell all though but I wasn’t feeling confident. I soon had my kit packed away and back to the car and chatting to a few of the lads it was obvious that it had been a struggle for a lot of people today.

Round to peg 34 for the Weigh-In and Fred started things off in A section with 45 lbs 5ozs followed by Dai with 38 lbs 11ozs. The Minx has a real struggle today and could only manage 23lbs 11ozs leaving a lot of very relieved anglers. Mat had managed a decent 90 lbs 11ozs closely followed by Terry with 83 lbs 5ozs, but it was Kevin who took the A section honours today taking full advantage of peg 4 not being fished with 103 lbs 7ozs from peg 6. Onto the first half of B section and Steve had managed 66 lbs 9ozs but had been totally eclipsed by Simon who put an excellent 225 lbs 2ozs on the scales. Malc’s day didn’t get any better either, his 22 lbs 10ozs meaning that daughter Gem added him to The Minx List again. Clive managed 27 lbs 1oz but Paul Jay took 126 lbs 3ozs from peg 13 to complete the first part of B section. C section saw Budgie weigh 61 lbs 10ozs and Neil recorded 91 lbs 3ozs only to be edged out by Paul and The Pink Hat with 95 lbs 4ozs. Round on peg 22 Nick W-P put 25 lbs 9ozs on the scales and at least avoided a Minxing, while my fish came to 81½lbs. Michael weighed 43¼lbs and Nick W put 68 lbs 10ozs on the scales to complete C section. Dave C recorded 34 lbs 15ozs from peg 30 and Tony was last to weigh with 99¼lbs to complete B section.

Once more it was back to the hut for the results and the winner today by the proverbial country mile was Simon for the second Jinx Match on the trot with Paul Jay in second and third going to Kevin. The section winners were Kevin, Simon, and Paul Roberts.
The Minx claimed just 1 victim today, her Dad (The Jinx) for the second Jinx Match running guaranteeing that he’ll be wearing it on the next match, and while I collected a Golden Nugget from Michael and Gem, I had to hand one over to Neil.

The penultimate match is on September 22nd, and it’s all still to play for in the Series. Can Simon make it three wins in a row? we’ll see on the day.
Overall Result

Names in Pink are those that were “MINXED”


Location: Holton, Oxfordshire OX33, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Alders Farm Fishery. Great Brickhill. Buckinghamshire. September 13th, 2012.

Marsh AC
Alders Farm Fishery


Once again I’m travelling up toward Milton Keynes to Alders Farm Fishery just outside the village of Great Brickhill. It’s for a Marsh AC match that’s been arranged by club member Keith Ashby who lives reasonably close to the fishery. Today is really just a friendly mid week knock up though with a few of the venue regulars invited to make up the numbers today, but it’s a fantastic venue that’s capable of throwing up some mega match weights, so well worth taking the day off work for. Living down in South London an early start was called for to avoid the London rush hour, so the alarm went off at some ungodly hour and with the cats fed and a couple of cups of coffee consumed, the car was loaded up in the dark and I was on my way by 5·30 am. The plan worked a treat and gave me a clear run up the M1 and A5 meaning I pulled into the car park just after 7 am. Trev’s van was already parked up and young Mark Quick has obviously been dropped off as he was sitting on his box surrounded by the rest of his kit in splendid isolation.

Dinah soon appeared and set up the dip so we could rinse our nets off and Trev staggered into view with a couple of gallons of maggots that he had to riddle off ready for the anglers today. With that done it was time to open the shop and we were soon chatting over the prospects for the day ahead as other anglers started to arrive including Keith, the organiser of today's match and pretty soon the banter was starting to flow back and forth. Anyway with some fishery pellets purchased my stomach was telling me it was time to make my way down to The Pump House for breakfast, so I collected my kit and headed off down the hill.

Dinah already had breakfast under way when I got there, in fact Kevin and Jean were already tucking in. A coffee and a full English soon had me ready to face the day ahead as the rest of today's anglers arrived. One of those was Mal Talbot who Trev describes asMad as a box of frogs‘ but he’s fished at the top level for many years and now helps out presenting the Alders Farm and GOT Baits video’s that Trev produces, so spends a fair bit of time at the fishery. Standing out on the veranda taking in the sunshine you could see that there were plenty of fish moving, an encouraging sign but with the recent colder nights I had a feeling that it could be a little harder than expected today.

Around about 9·30 am Keith called everyone to order (no small task) and got the draw under way. Into the bag and peg 34 finds it’s way to me. I was more than happy with that as Vic had told me it was a good peg to draw. So off to collect my kit and make the short trip to the peg. Kev was settling into peg 38 along with Dave on peg 36, while to my right I could see Mal on peg 32, so no pressure there then !!!​


Peg 34 is a lovely looking peg that had a decent view over the rest of the lake, There’s a big bush overhanging the water to the left and a smaller one in the margin to the right. It’s quite shallow with a maximum of around 2 feet of water but that doesn’t normally have an adverse effect on the fishing.​


I set up 3 identical rigs that were freshly tied, all 0·2g NG Springer Sampson Margin’s on on 0·21 Ultima power match with size 16 Kamasan B911X’s to finish them off that would be fished on a top 2 +1 at around 18 inches deep. Bait was simply 4 mm fishery pellets that I damped down for feeding while hook baits were just hard 6 mm’s along with corn and GOT Baits soft hookers as change bait. With a bit of time before the All -In I strolled round for a chat with Mal and found him perched on his trusty red ASI making the most of the glorious sunshine ……​


and was soon joined by Dave and Kevin. After a while I left them chatting and made my way back to my peg for a quick check that everything was ready before we started.

At 11 am Keith called the All-In so I fed some pellet along the bush to my left and some pellet and corn into the right hand margin before shipping a banded pellet out to the bush. a couple of tentative dinks before the float vanished but the lift offered little resistance before a rudd surfaced and promptly fell of the hook, not the start that I was looking for, so I re-fed and dropped in again. This time the float just buried and a lot more resistance this time as a hooked carp tore off in the shallow water. I soon had it under control however and in the net, a 2½lb mirror to get me up and running. It was steady away from there on in if I’m honest, I wasn’t catching quickly but I did catch steadily, the only real problem was lost fish, but with hooked fish charging off when they’re hooked in shallow water it’s inevitable that you’ll lose a few if the hook hold isn’t spot on.

I could see that Mal appeared to be matching me fish for fish, but looking round the rest of the lake, although people were catching, it didn’t appear to be at the expected rate that the lake is capable of. Indeed after around an hour Dave appeared to see how I was doing and reckoned that he only had around 15 lbs to show for his efforts. I just kept feeding the two lines but concentrated on the left hand bush as I didn’t want to disturb the margin to early. After a couple of hours I had around 25 fish in the nets and could see that Vic over on peg 2 appeared to be putting a few together as well ……​


I could hear Al over on peg 6 complaining that all he could find were small fish in the 1 lb – 1½lb range, but knowing Al he was probably fibbing. Clive however seemed to be doing OK when my camera lens caught him in the act of landing a fish ……​


My fish appeared to back off just before 1 pm, so as is my custom I re-fed quite heavily and took a stroll with the camera to allow things to settle. Terry was tucked away on peg 29 and struggling to come to terms with it today and only taking the occasional fish ……​


Keith was on peg 28 and with nobody on the next 3 pegs he was targeting the margin with corn, the fish were certainly there as he could see their tails waving at him, but getting them to take his bait was proving to be a frustrating exercise as they continued to ignore it in favour of the free offerings ……​


As I made my way back Mal was still plugging away steadily taking a succession of fish in glorious sunshine, at least that’s the way it appeared ……​


Returning to my peg it was now in the shade and with the breeze blowing onto my back I felt the need to put my fleece on. Back out with the bait and the fish had settled again and I took a look down the margin for the first time as I could see fish moving in and out of it. It did produce bites but the fish were much smaller than I had been taking from the bush so after around 30 minutes I reverted back to there. With around 2 hours to go Kev was having a bit of a grueller on peg 38 as it just wasn’t producing for him today, but Dave started to catch at a better rate which cheered him up no end ……​


Things had obviously picked up for Al as well as he was heard to ask Keith if the match could be extended for a bit longer, a request that Keith declined.​


I managed to keep the fish coming steadily till the end of the match and by the time that Keith called the All-Out at 4 pm I had 67 fish in my nets. Packing away my kit Mal appeared reckoning that I’d beaten him and shook my hand. I wasn’t so sure as it seemed to me that he’d been catching at a similar rate, but the scales would have the last say on that.

Trev had come down to start the weigh in on the Pump House bank and as Dave had the club scales with him Keith started to weigh-in on our side. Kev had indeed had a frustrating day with just 28½lbs to show for his efforts. Dave’s peg had come good in the last couple of hours allowing him to put 126½lbs on the scales. At my peg my fish weighed 177½lbs and Mal was proved to be right when his fish came in at 119½lbs . Simon had quietly put together 74¼lbs from peg 30 while Terry’s fish registered 58½lbs. Finally Keith weighed in with a level 87 lbs and with the weigh-in on our side concluded we made our way back to The Pump House for the results.

Trev had laid on Tea and Coffee and broken out the biscuits which was very welcome as the assembled anglers discussed their experiences of the day. Finally Keith had the results collated and was ready to announce them. It turned out that my weight had been good enough for me to take the win today with Al taking second place and Vic taking third.

I’d just like to say a big Thank You to Keith for organising the match for us, and another Big Thank You to Dinah,Trev, and all the staff at Alders Farm, Top Breakfast, great fishing, it’s hard to ask for more unless it can be moved closer to where I live.​

Location: Soulbury, Buckinghamshire, UK


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
Colemans Cottage Fishery. Wood Lake. September 15th, 2012.

Marsh AC club match.


Essex is the destination for me today with another Marsh AC club match at Colemans Cottage on Wood Lake. It’s a venue that’s always popular with the club members and today is our second visit this year so hopefully it will provide a good days fishing for the lads. I was awake before the alarm went off and soon had the cats fed and a couple of cups of coffee drunk before loading up the car before sunrise. I couldn’t help noticing how cold it felt though, the car thermometer registering just 11°C and for the first time in a while I put the car heater on as I set off. It’s a great time to be travelling though with little traffic on the roads and as I cleared the Dartford Tunnel the sun was just rising, promising a lovely day ahead weather wise.

I pulled into the fishery car park at just past 7am and indeed it appeared that I was the first one to arrive. A quick look at the lake revealed that the level was down from our previous visit with the platforms a good 2 feet clear of the water. Gerry and Jayne has opened the lodge so the first order of the day was one of Jayne’s large breakfasts to set me up for the day ahead. Lee was next to arrive, he was guesting today and is always good company so we were soon catching up as breakfast was consumed and the others arrived. I then got a phone call from Terry, his car wouldn’t start so he wouldn’t be joining us today.

With breakfast out of the way Dave soon had the money collected and got the draw out of the way. Peg 27 was to be mine for the match, not one I was familiar with , so gathering up my kit I set off to get acquainted with it.​


Arriving at the peg it turned out that I had Dave on peg 25 for company on my right and young Zack to my left on peg 29, with Lee and Chris opposite on pegs 13 and 15.​


The carp run to a decent size in Wood Lake and the Barbel are getting bigger all the time so I made up 3 rigs, the first for straight out in front at 5 mtrs where I had around 3½ft of water was a 0·4g NG XT Mugger HD on 0·18 Ultima power match straight through to size 16 Kamasan B911Xs while the other 2 were for the margin while the other 2 were 0·2g NG Springer Sampson Margin’s on on 0·18 Ultima power match with size 14 Kamasan B911X’s. Feed would be a mix of corn and damp 4 mm pellet while hook baits would be a mix of pellet, corn and some GOT Baits paste.

10 am and Dave called the All-In and I fed both margin lines then dropped a banded 6 mm over a few loose pellets on the 5 mtr line. A few of the lads were into quick fish but I wasn’t one of those and 30 minutes in I still hadn’t had as much as a bite so I fed a full pot of pellet and corn to see if it would tempt anything in. Well after about 5 minutes the swim started fizzing like a jacuzzi but the bites still refused to come . However Tony over on peg 11 had started to put one or two fish together ……​


Finally after around 45 minutes the float slowly slid away and a gentle lift saw a pleasing amount of elastic stretching from the top kit, The fish was quickly subdued and slid over the landing net, a common of around 3½lbs to finally get me off the mark. Back out but it appeared that it had been a solitary fish as no more bites were forthcoming, a bit more feed and a few more bubbles but no bites despite varying the depth and the baits I just couldn’t buy another bite.

Chris was opposite on peg 15 and I’ve often taken the micky out of him telling him that his kit looks like a throw back to the 70′s but he was definitely having the last laugh on me today as he started to take fish from his peg while I could only look on enviously …​


After 90 minutes I noticed a couple of carp moving in the left hand margin, normally I would have left it longer but I was already getting desperate so dropped a banded 8 mm in there. The float buried almost straight away and I connected with a big fish that powered off towards Zack, but almost straight away the rig came pinging back with a large scale on the hook.

A look down the other margin with corn looked like being no more productive until the float vanished from sight, yielding a common around the 5lb mark to add to my meagre total. Lee was having no such problems over on peg 13 however though he was surprised at just how hard the fish fought, giving his hydro a good work out ……​


Another try on the 5 mtr line finally produced a couple of F1′s after around half an hour but again nothing followed them. I could see odd fish constantly moving through the swim in front of me but nothing appeared to want to settle. Was it because the water was down and I was sitting so high up above the water? had the cold nights upset things? I couldn’t work it out today whatever it was.

Chris’s guest Gary Luck was over on peg 17 and it looked as if he was pretty much in the same boat as me, as I could see his swim fizzing but only producing the odd fish for him ……​


Back to the margins for me and I finally managed to tempt another couple of carp from the left hand side, but in all honesty I was going nowhere fast. Around 2 pm Chrissy arrived with Dave’s two grandchildren Lily and Alfie who both wanted to catch a fish with Grandad. It’s a good job they hadn’t arrived earlier or they would have undoubtedly battered me today.

More in desperation than anything else I took my feeder rod out and decided to give that a go, but after 3 casts that tangled and snapped off, pretty much summing up the match for me in a nutshell. Meanwhile young Alfie was getting well into helping Grandad catch and land his fish ……​


John (tutu) was suffering a similar match to mine over on peg 21 but as the match drew to a close started to find one or two fish from his margin ……​


I battled on with the margins and actually managed to get another couple of carp before Dave called the All-Out at 4 pm. I have to say that I was glad to hear the whistle today, 6 hours for just 8 fish for around 30 lbs wasn’t the outcome I’d expected and with hindsight I got it horribly wrong, getting side tracked by fish I could see in the margins despite them not wanting to co-operate today.

It took me a while to get the kit packed away meaning that I didn’t follow the Weigh-In round as usual and when it got round to me Keith was leading with 118 lbs from peg 3 from Tony with 88 lbs. Dave with Lily and Alfie’s help had 85½lbs. My fish weighed a level 30 lbs and Zack had 54½lbs leaving me like a bit of cod “battered both sides. The Weigh-In moved on at pace as it does at Colemans and I made my way back to the car park with my kit and loaded it away.​


Back at the lodge for the results and Jean had asked Jayne to lay on a buffet complete with Birthday Cake ……​


…for Kevin’s Birthday (which was on Sunday) and I have to say it offered the best bites of the day as far as I was concerned.

Dave announced the results after everyone had tucked in and the winner today was Al with a fine 139lbs from peg 35. Keith was second with 118lbs and regained the MK Nugget from Mick and Tony was 3rd on the day.

The next club match is at The Private Lake in East Sussex in a couple of weeks time, but before that next Saturday is the penultimate round of The Jinx Series at Rolf’s Lake which will hopefully give me the chance to get this match out of my system.​


Location: Rivenhall, Essex, UK
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