Monday, 18 January 2016

Warwickshire Avon – Lucy’s Mill, A Tale of Poo

Many moons ago I’d fished Lucy’s Mill with a friend of mine Simon and couldn’t even remember what I’d caught, if I recall I didn’t particularly enjoy it, it’s not my sort of venue to be honest, I’ve banged on about it before but I’m an angler that seeks solitude. I get all querulous when mixing with the great unwashed, in the summer apart from the frequent eyecandy, it was a nightmare…

Whatever you do, don’t leave your bait box open or unattended, ‘Alfie’, WILL eat it.

There was a good chance for a Zander though, so Mick, get a grip FFS….

I was hoping during this cold spell the banks would be quiet so for this session I positioned myself between the lower weir and the bridge and intended to fish a small dead bait for the Zander and then use a small jig rod.

There is more or less all species to go at here….but it was the Zander I was after.

Despite catching hundreds from the canal after 5 ot 6 attempts on the river I've failed to catch one, but it's no secret the Mill has some.

The Lucy’s Mill Bridge a stone’s throw away was built in and around 1590 most probably to get people with a pig under one arm, a chicken under the other to market. In 1867 floods destroyed two of the piers and the wooden bridge had to be completely re-built. It was eventually replaced in 1934 with an art deco style concrete bridge to match the design of the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre that was opened a couple of years earlier.

The problem I found previously was that the bridge was often a meeting place for those that frequent the Stratford Greenway, the modern phenomenon, MAMILS (middle aged men in Lycra) who despite their supposedly superior fitness apparently find it difficult to negotiate the steps with their carbon fiber bikes and GPS computers. A local money raising group (FoLMB) would like it upgraded so I assume cyclists can ride 2 abreast like they do on the local roads, well ok, presumingly for those less mobile, as wheelchair users would certainly benefit from a ramp.

There is an issue though, it spans private land, which would require a compulsory purchase order which is unlikely to be granted. This isn’t China and there isn’t an upcoming Expo, so for the time being, the FoLMB will have to make do, then again it would be nice to see some of my hard earned council tax going to a project that would benefit residents and Stratford’s 4 million yearly visitors.

The river had dropped a huge amount over the last week and a bit because the water had been lapping half way up the benches and partly over the boarding foot bath, still coloured mind, with visibility on a few inches or so.

It was only a short session this, time is precious and all that, anyway a deadbait positioned near the bridge was left untouched for an hour or so, as was the small jig so I moved upstream a little opposite the flats.

The deadbait was getting interest but I didn't manage to connect to anything, I've had the flesh stripped to the bone before, and again, similar results, small fish, cray fish ? I changed from a red head white lure to my favorite colour the firetiger and it was the change what was needed. Within a few casts something hit the lure, not the biggest of fish and it fought more like a Perch but luckily for me, my first river Zander.

Well it's a start, 1lb 8oz, it's a PB anyway.

The amount of dogs walking in this area is staggering and after one decided to relieve its bowls a few feet from me and having to endure the stench that went with it, it was time to leave.

I'll be back again, maybe with an all out deadbait attack or maybe a maggot feeder set-up to see if I could tempt a silver bream.


  1. Such a shame Mick, that there are disgusting owners oh don't have the common descency to keep their mutts away. But after all, anglers are peasants and nothing more. I'd have kicked the bastard in!, especially the mood I'm in right now lol. Tight lines mate. James.

    1. I saw the funny side, the amount of dogs was unbelievable though, most under control but those that were not, were uncontrollable. I cycle the Greenway in Stratford with my youngest and it's riddled with dog poo, last time I was there a Lab took 30 seconds to do his poo and the owner just walked past, and I picked her up on it and she just pleaded ignorant. It's one of my bugbears, disgusting.

  2. Dan will remember when I kindly fetched a pooch out of the drink one afternoon.

    Well, it was eating bait. A lap type kind of dog. Hind legs got a bit too enthusiastic. Sent it the wrong direction...

    So I grabbed it by the hair atop its head and threw it sopping wet well up the bank.

    The owner did not thank me!

    Should have let her watch it drown...


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