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Wingham Fish-In Catch Reports 2013

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Thanks guys, I could probably not catch another fish all season and be happy. I'm also really lucky in the I've had 5 new PBs in 4 years (3 different Tench PBs, 1 Perch and 1 Pike). This is in no way reflective of my fishing ability but more so in the amazing fishery Steve has created and the help of the syndicate members that come around and help us every year.

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One thing I haven't mentioned yet is that Arbocop took some time out to tour the complex with me looking for sites for the trees he kindly donated to us. I wanted them to go close to spots where Jan

Just had an eel, 4 lb 2oz. My biggest for 2 years, so well pleased.   Congratulations Neil on a stonking Tench.

Had another eel in the rain, slightly smaller but still a good size at 3 lb 13 oz. I am a tad wet :-)

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Neil's tench certainly was a cracker!


That's 3 doubles now during the Fish-In!

Wingham Specimen Coarse & Carp Syndicates www.winghamfisheries.co.uk Beautiful, peaceful, little fished gravel pit syndicates in Kent with very big fish. 2017 Forum Fish-In Sat May 6 to Mon May 8. Articles http://www.anglersnet.co.uk/steveburke.htm Index of all my articles on Angler's Net

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I know there's still a few reports to come but it's time for some thanks.


We all take it for granted now that the Fish-Ins run like clockwork. This is partly down to experience, but mostly down to the unstinting efforts of volunteers.


Firstly, thanks to Wyeknot (Steve Campbell) for the laminated photomaps of the lakes, plus breakfast for the early arrivers. I'd add that Steve didn't fish this year, and he drove down at the crack of dawn just to provide the breakfasts at his own expense.


Secondly, to Mike Turner (Arbocop) for kindly donating trees plus helping decide where to put them.


Thirdly, to Clan Groombridge, especially TJ for help with the BBQ.


Fourthly, to Peggy, not only for 3 BBQs, but also for all the evenings helping with the huge amount of paperwork.


Lastly and most of all, to the bailiff team including young Sam. Non-members have no idea of the amount of work they get through, not just during the Fish-In with the taxi service for everyone's gear, but beforehand as well. The amount of effort they put in is enormous, even when they're in pain or exhausted. This year it went to the wire, but we just about made it even though I can now no longer help as much myself these days as I'm tied to the office.


It's certainly true to say without the bailiffs there wouldn't be a Fish-In and you wouldn't be reading this.

Edited by Steve Burke
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Wingham Specimen Coarse & Carp Syndicates www.winghamfisheries.co.uk Beautiful, peaceful, little fished gravel pit syndicates in Kent with very big fish. 2017 Forum Fish-In Sat May 6 to Mon May 8. Articles http://www.anglersnet.co.uk/steveburke.htm Index of all my articles on Angler's Net

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Well done to all involved in the logistics of the event.

We are not putting it back it is a lump now put that curry down and go and get the scales

have I told you abouit the cruise control on my Volvo ,,,,,,,bla bla bla Barder rod has it come yet?? and don`t even start me on Chris Lythe :bleh::icecream:

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Many thanks to Steve and Peggy, Glyn, Terry and family, Budgie and Andrew. Once again, myself and Russ had an amazing few days catching up with the Wingham crew and targetting the residents.


No tench or bream for us, but a few eels and jacks to keep the scolded cat reaction times honed.



As with every Wingham experience there's always the debrief, and talk of lessons learned and interesting observations.


Upon deploying the Mk82 Sharkbyte underwater viewing system it was imediately obvious that there has been an absolute explosion in what was already a prolific natural food supply. Personal thoughts - I remain pretty convinced that this was our greatest hurdle on the weekend.


Although I only observed four tench over the three days (all on Saturday - one of which I only saw when reviewing some last light footage back at home), they were solitary fish of medium size and only took a mouthful of bait before heading off again. Pretty difficult to draw any conclusions from as for improving baiting and rigs. The area infront of me (the 'hump') I baited fairly heavily and had all of my fish from (plus footage) but zero signs of bubbles. The bar 30yds, or so, at about the 10 o'clock position I saw occasional bubbling and the only bait put out was three or four casts with a method feeder, but had nothing.


Anyway, here's thirty odd seconds of what might have been, give or take a couple of feet. My bait was air injected lob tail and fake corn popped-up about an inch. Top left of picture, 1/6th of the way to the right, 1/6th the way down.



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Hi Everyone please find below my ahem "catch return" for the weekend. Despite my poor return I really enjoyed the weekend and would like to echo everyone's comments in thanking Steve, Peggy and all the bailiffs. I was fishing on Tims point, I am not sure if I could have done better, though fishing out into the far right hand corner of the "weedy trench" in front of me, from the start, would probably have helped. However it's got have been the swim with the most complex underwater features I have ever fished. Way different from most waters I fish where you usually just get a couple of dropoffs and maybe an island - thats my excuse anyway! Catch return as follows:

Sat evening approx 21:00 pike caught on lobworm while retrieving rig approx 9lb (not weighed).
Between 22:30 and 3:30 Sunday miss 5 twitchy bites all on worm & 4 liners. In my experience twitchy bites like this on my fairly crude eel gear are usually from small narrow mouthed eels or silvers.
10:30 Sunday morning liner - Tench moving over line very close in and probably fish like this the source of overnight liners. I fished a block end maggot feeder rig in this area for the remainder of my stay but no luck.
Sunday evening 21:30 pike weighed at 8lb 14oz on dendrabena worm. - this looked similar to the first pike caught but fought much harder.
Between 23:10 and 00:20 3 missed twitchy bites to worm baits.
Also at around 00:30 I spook a large fish close in when recasting - tench sized I think. Soon after at 00:45 a fair sized silver fish took a moth? off the surface approx 12 foot out.

At dawn I had a small lift on a worm rig on retrieving the rig a big swirl as that pesky pike tried to grab the bait again! :nerd:
Difference between Sat & Sunday evening, much fewer bites, probably the cooler conditions? and also no liners (one of my rigs Sat evening was fished over the first bar to my left so fish moving along the bar may have been the source of some of the liners).




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Well apart from waking up on Saturday morning with an ear infection which was incredibly painful and gave me 50% hearing loss in my left ear I had another awesome weekend at the wingham fish-in. I've been incredibly lucky over the years and have been able to fish a few of the Wingham fish-ins but I'm still amazed at the sheer beauty and incredible atmosphere of Wingham coarse lake. The Wingham fish-in has now taken over from the glorious 16th as the kick off to my fishing season, it really gets your fishing brain working overtime. Myself and Cliff discuss tactics, conditions and bait for 2 weeks before the fish-in and it really gets the juices flowing. Unfortunately we have nothing in the way of gravel pits up here in the midlands so its a learning curve for us every time we go and I feel that we've made so much progress over the years. This year the conversation's in the days leading up to the fish-in were mainly about the conditions and incoming weather rather than tactics and bait. With the late spring we've had and the incoming north easterly winds bringing that horrible wet stuff with it we knew that fishing would be tough. Thankfully wingham offers more than just quality fishing. The surroundings are incredible, the banter was lighthearted, fun and, quite often educational and the food was .....well delicious as always. So once again a big thank you and congratulations go out to Steve, Peggy, Glynn, Terry & family for an excellent weekend.

Right now on to the fishing report. Apologies if its a bit long :)


Day 1,

I had been allocated 'first platform' which looked spot on for my target species as it had a very distinct gravel area at 50 yards with weed surrounding the area. Perfect for mr tench :-). Cliff was in the 'Y swim'. We call it 'Pot noodles' now as it was the spot we fished in together on our first ever wingham fish-in and had come totally unprepared with a trade pack of pot noodles which would serve as our breakfast, dinner and tea for the next 3 days. I've not eaten one since!!!

Both of us would be targeting tench using tactics which we know to work back home on our local estate lake. I opted for a method feeder surrounded with a mixture of Expo and marine halibut groundbait mixed with lots of molasses on one rod while the other rods would be set up as scaled down bolt rig tactics with short hook lengths, fake maggot or caster and placed in a PVA bag full of the reel stuff.

Cliff used similar tactics but also had a rod out with a worm hookbait looking for perch in the deep hole he had to his right.

Although warmer than I was expecting it just didn't seem right for a bed of bait which has seen me catch quite a few of the shoal tench from wingham in previous years so I stuck to the little and often approach to feel my way into the weekend. After finding 3 spots at the base of the gravel, all in around 8ft of water I clipped up and marked the line so I could be accurate with every cast. I was fishing just past the weed so if I cast short of the clip I would wind in and recast to ensure my bait was not buried. With all rods positioned I didn't have to wait long as the rod on the method feeder, after a few single bleeps, rattled off. Unfortunately it was one of wingham a smaller residents at 4lb 6oz but it meant that I was doing something right.


I recast this rod and settled down for a cuppa, only to be disturbed by a single bleep and a 1 inch lift on the caster rod. Nothing else happened so I put down to a liner and reset the bobbin. 15 mins later and another single bleep and 1 inch lift of he bobbin saw me striking into what I thought was a load of weed. As I was dragging the ball of weed in I noticed that it was starting to veer off to my right and as it got into the clear water infront of me I could see that it was actually a very good male tench of around 7lb. Just as I shouted to cliff that I'd got a good fish on, it gave a single shake of its head and as it did so the hook popped out and I watched in horror as it just drifted back into the depths...gutted!! I recast the rod and went back to my bivvy to have a little cry and to finish my cold tea.

At around 8pm the same rod gave a 1ft screamer which nearly had me falling off my chair but then it stopped. I decided to hit it anyway and once again it just felt like I had cast into weed. I had no idea if there was a fish on or not so I placed the rod back in the rest and watched the tip for 10 mins to see if there was any movement. Nothing occurred so I decided I would need to pull for a break. As I straightened the rod and walked backwards I felt the weed tear away from the bottom and start moving towards me. After a few minutes of slow pumping I heaved the giant ball of green stuff into the net, it wasn't until i started to peel back the weed that I realised there was a tench sat in amongst it. Not the best scrap I'd ever had off and tench and by far not the prettiest one I've ever caught but it was a wingham tench and I was a happy angler.


5lb 12oz

Apart from this fantastic sunset nothing else happened on day one.



Day 2,

Apart from waking at 2am with severe pain in my badly infected ear I was undisturbed for the whole night which was disappointing as the tench had been feeding during the night in the days running up to the fish-in. I recast the rods with fresh bait and put the kettle on for a cuppa.

With no action coming to the rods in the morning either it was time to head up to the club house for one of Peggy's awesome BBQ's and to catch up with a few old faces and to put names to the new. Going on the previous days experience we knew that the afternoon was the best time for a bite so we cleared our plate and headed back to the lake to get our rods back out. Having not slept well the night before because of my ear and having a belly full of BBQ my body was telling me it was time for a nap. I got myself into the sleeping bag and was about to nod off when my right hand rod screamed off. Nearly missing my bivvy slippers on the way out the door I hit it and felt a good fish running around to my left. As it passed over my left hand rod I felt it grind to a holt and everything went solid, as I applied a little more pressure to see if I could get it moving again I felt a kick and then everything went slack. I was totally gutted but as it was still early I tied up another PVA bag and got it back out on the spot. No sooner had a set the bobbin on my right hand rod when my left hand rod burst into life. This fish did exactly the same as the previous fish and kited around to my left. Having learnt from my previous mistake I piled on the pressure to keep the fish up away from the week. Alas it wasn't to be as, once again, I felt everything go solid as the fish ran into heavy weed again. I tried piling on the pressure as well as letting everything go slack for 5 minutes to see if the fish would swim out of its own accord but after 15 minutes it wasn't going to budge so I had no choice but to pull for a break. 2 fish lost in 20 mins which, in a place like Wingham, plays heavy on your mind as just one of those could be a fish of a lifetime or even a British record :(.

Hands shaking with adrenaline and frustration I repositioned the rod and put the kettle on again. Just as I was settling down to watch another sunset, which was nowhere near as impressive on the Sunday night as it was on the Saturday but it was a pleasant evening none the less, I had a very quick run on the method feeder rod. Determined not to let the fish get its head down I bullied the fish away from the weed. Getting a glimpse of a very long flank I thought I had something very special attached to my hook but couldn't have been more disappointed when a jack of around 5lb hit the surface. Damn vegetarian pike!

Unfortunately that was all the action for day 2 as I woke on Monday morning without being disturbed at all.


Day 3,

Well what a contrast to the previous 2 mornings! Cold, wet and windy. Not ideal conditions for tench fishing which was proven by the lack of activity for the whole morning. Typically it rained long enough to get all the kit soaked while packing up but thankfully we didn't have to carry it back to the car as Glyn was on hand with the trailer. Cheers fella!

Well, although not great fishing, we didn't blank which, given the conditions, means that we were two very happy anglers. Once again we leave Wingham for another year but it will stay fresh on our minds for many weeks to come. We will be back!!


once again a big thank you to all involved. Everything you do is massively appreciated by all!


Cliff's tench of 6lb 9oz


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Effort equals reward!!

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Glad you all had a great weekend. Maybe once Liam's finished A levels next year and maybe my life will be more 'settled' we will be able to get down again.



One life, live it, love it, fish it!




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Secondly, to Mike Turner (Arbocop) for kindly donating trees plus helping decide where to put them.


It's certainly true to say without the bailiffs there wouldn't be a Fish-In and you wouldn't be reading this.



Hi Steve - it's my pleasure, no prolem at all. I wanted to see you before I went as I looked at those problem willows from my side of the lake and I think I know whats going on. I'll ping you via the website.


Thanks to the bailiffs and all those who helped make it lovely - albeit fishless - day for me.



"I want some repairs done to my cooker as it has backfired and burnt my knob off."

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