You can't catch carp in 'ere!
NoKnot's carpin' rule-bending recollections: Let's step back in time...
Well, this one goes back to around 1990 ish, as I cant remember the exact dates, it was after all 20 years ago!
Anyway here goes! I moved from my beloved Canterbury to Ashford in Kent. There were many reasons for this; one, I was working in Ashford as a professional modelmaker, and two, my marriage had broken down and I thought a new fresh start was in order!
So I found a nice little 2 bed room bungalow for rent. The area looked very nice and clean, and a week later I was a resident in Ashford. Cool!
It was only after moving in I had a nice walk around the area, and to my amazement I found that 2-3 mins walk from my front door was a lake.
Now this was a very pretty place indeed and maybe 3-4 acres in size - heaven on my door step! There were signs which told me 'you need a day ticket', perfect I thought. Until I bought one and read the rules, that is!
No boilies, only one rod and so on, and NO night fishing! You get the gist of it. I was home from work by 5pm so early season Tench sessions on the tip were order of the day, fishing the margins along the reed lines with sweetcorn. I would bag 5-6 Tench in an evening sesh, all good fun on light gear, but I was and still am a Carp angler at heart, and although the Tench are great fish and I love them, I was running (fishing) on half steam!
I asked the local anglers and bailiffs about the Carp, the only reply was echoed as "You can't catch carp in 'ere"
So the end of the season arrived, and the new one came around, very fast. I had caught enough tench and decided to have a go for the carp, even though "You can't catch Carp in 'ere" So I spent a little time plumbing around a nice sized island and found that the left hand side of the island dropped down to around 15' but there was a bar running from the island and I found 3-4' of water dropping away to 15'. That would do me to start.
Now I had to think of bait. To me this was a simple choice, the humble peanut. And as I lived so close, it was a simple matter to go down after work to bait up the swim. I know some frown on the use of peanuts but I have found them to be an excellent bait and I baited lightly, maybe half a pound a day.
Range to the bar was no more than 25 yards, so nice easy accurate baiting and casting was possible.
So the new season begins. And I bagged up from the start, from my wooded covered swim, and two rods! I know, I'm a bugger! I had singles and low doubles. The best was a mint zip linear of 12-13 lbs, stunning! Around this time a stranger approached me and said "Hello mate". I said "Hello". At that time I did not know that the said stranger would still be a great friend to this day, and that we would spend many wonderful hours on many banks together.
Back to the fishing. Well at that time there were no big carp in the water, but good sport could be had with a little effort. After work sessions normally saw one carp banked. I did a few a few nights too. There was just my set up and a bed chair, and I was joined by my two cats, Pink and Floyd, who would follow me to the swim and go hunting and jump on the bedchair with a big loving purrrrrrrrrrrrr! The best night I had a 13 lbs Common and the zip linear again as a true brace, as I had a double take and landed them in the net together.
Time fiies, and so does life. Time to move on. I had signed a contract to work in Hong Kong. I remember calling my dear old Mum at the time (RIP old girl) and saying, "Mum I got a new job". She said "Nice" . Two seconds latter it sunk in "HONG KONG!!" Bless...
So I was on a notice period in Jan 93. It was very cold indeed. I decided to fish a day session. It was that cold, the ground was totally frozen, and with an easterly wind the conditions could not have been worse.
The bailiff asked "Pike fishin mate?"
I said "No. Carp".
He said "Hahaha good luck!"
Three hours later I had the lake record carp in my landing net and ran to Ian's house for a pic. He laughed - he thought I was joking!
While the carp was on the mat for the photos, the bailiff stopped and looked, and then carried on without a single word!
Stuff 'em, I say, and that fish was caught on my very own Premier mix BOILIE! Now ban me you ***! Hahahaha.
To finish... It was a stunning little water to have some fun on and close to home. I caught the record fish three times. All between 7lbs and 15lbs+ and maybe fifty other carp. Many fond memories too. Thank you Singleton lake and Ian for your great friendship to this day.