If you don’t know what a “boilie” is, perhaps it’s time you learnt – and if you do, well then you’re obviously already hooked on a hobby that (according to the National Rivers Authority) 2.2 million of us enjoy.
The popular past-time I’m referring to is recreational fishing – or more particularly, for the purposes of this blog, coarse fishing at private fisheries.
Coarse fishing is big in all senses of the word here in our home county of Gloucestershire. We meet many keen anglers here at the Edgemoor Inn on their way to or from a fishing expedition in the area, and we all enjoy the enthusiastic yarns they spin over a pint or two – often about the clichéd “one that got away”.
Listening to a keen fisherman talk about his or her passion is certainly enough to whet the appetite for having a go, and if you’re holidaying in our part of the Cotswolds (near Painswick, not far from Stroud) you won’t have to go far to cast a line.
Size is Everything
Literally just down the road from our Inn, nestled beneath the village of Edge, lies with four well-stocked lakes (one reserved for match fishing) where lurk fat and flourishing Carp, Tench, Bream and Roach.
When it comes to catching fish, size is everything, and Harescombe Fisheries can boast of offering up good-sized Carp of 20+ pounds.
Harescombe is under the amiable management of Andy Price, who is helpful and knowledgeable. There’s a café and small shop on site so you can enjoy a cuppa and pick up necessary fishing tackle and supplies. All the lakes are accessible by car with parking available near most of the pegs (for the uninitiated a peg is a designated marked out fishing area) so you don’t have to lug your gear very far.
The lakes are open from dawn until dusk every day all year round, and a full day of fishing costs you only £8 for one rod, £12 for two.
Of the Harescombe fishing lakes Field Lake, prettily set about with weeping willows, is the most popular with a good head of silver fish and some weighty carp landed as the norm. Meadow Lake also holds a good mix of fish double-figure carp. Pasture Lake is the littlest, but certainly not the least when it comes to catches and it has a reputation for surprising unsuspecting anglers with hard-fighting carp.
The elongated Match Lake with a narrow centre island has been constructed to ensure fair fishing for competition anglers, and Harescombe offers plenty of open matches. When there’s no match on the go match anglers use it for practice, while casual pleasure fisherfolk can enjoy the other three lakes at any time.
(By the way … back to the “boilie” we started this blog off with – it’s a small, hard ball made of a boiled paste of fishmeal, milk protein, semolina and eggs that is used as bait to catch carp.)
So, there you have it – something else to add to the “to do” list when you visit our little bit of paradise here in the Cotswolds! When you fancy a bit of fishing we look forward to hosting you here at the Edgemoor Inn during your visit – why not factor in one of our delicious home-cooked Sunday lunches to bring a fitting end to your expedition (don’t forget to book)?