Redbank Pools are part of the Pixley Pools complex, a group of four attractive waters which offer predominantly carp fishing on the outskirts of Ledbury in rural Herefordshire.
The Redbank Pools - Lily Pool and Willow Pool - can be found a short drive off the Ledbury ring road just past the UBL factory on the road to Little Marcle and are set in apple orchards which supply local cider makers.
Both these waters share a main car park and both hold fish to just under 20lbs with plenty around the 6lb mark.
Whereas Pixley Pools holds predominantly common carp, Redbank Pools are stocked with more mirrors than commons. Another difference is that although the two Pixley pools are stocked entirely with carp, the two Redbank waters also hold a good head of silver fish including decent sized skimmer bream, roach and rudd to about 1lb and some tench and perch.
Redbank's Lily Pool is the pool nearest the car park and has an island towards the far end whilst Willow Pool is about 50 yards to the right and has an island crowned by a beautiful willow tree whose branches cascade into the waters edge.
Lily Pool has banks which are fairly open but Willow is surrounded by trees and shrubs giving anglers plenty of cover from each other. Both pool have plenty of features to fish to.
Because both waters are shallow, being for the most part about four feet deep, them are both easy to fish on pole or waggler. Anglers should note however that fishing floating baits is not allowed, that the waters are open only for anglers aged 18 and over and that all anglers should have an unhooking mat.
The gates to both pools are controlled by a combination lock and anglers must telephone fishery owner Robert Bartha on 07802 402399 before fishing to obtain the combination. Day ticket fees are collected on the bank.
In addition to offering day tickets, Pixley Pools and Redbank Pools offer a season ticket which provides unlimited fishing - apart from when there are matches - on all four waters at a cost of £50.00 a year.
Membership runs for 12 months from the date it is taken out. Day/membership tickets and match bookings can also be obtained through Fishtastic, Unit 5, Block A, Holmer Trading Estate, College Road, Hereford HR1 1JS (Tel: 01432 350808).
Like the two other Pixley Pools waters both Lily and Willow are very attractive and provide unspoiled fishing in natural surroundings. There is a path around both pools leading to clearly marked grass pegs which give anglers plenty of room for large nets and tackle.
Fishing is available on both Lily Pool and Willow Pool from 5.00am until dusk but night fishing is not allowed. Keepnets are allowed only in matches but apart from this there are few rules and no bait bans. All that is asked is that anglers enjoy their fishing, respect the fish and leave their pegs tidy.
2015 Ticket costs
||All anglers (over 18s only)
(max two rods)
|Four Pool annual membership
(max two rods)
For Health and Safety and security reasons all anglers must contact Robert
on 07802 402399 before fishing
Fishing is from 5.00am until dusk
Lily Pool is a very attractive water about half to three quarters of an acre in size with a dozen clearly marked grass pegs and loads of features to fish to. It is stocked predominantly with mirror and common carp which average about 5lbs in weight but which have been caught to 15lbs. It is thought that over 90 per cent of the carp are mirrors. In addition there is a good head of silver fish including roach, rudd, skimmers, a few tench and some perch which usually only tend to show in winter.
The sides of the pool drop straight down to a fairly flat and even bottom which for the most part is only between three and four feet deep. This makes both pole and waggler fishing easy, the pole enabling anglers to drop their bait right next to the lilies and reeds where the fish love to hang out.
Although match catches on Lily are not as high as those on Pixley Pool a few miles away, most small club matches tend to be won with between 70lbs and 80lbs of fish. Match anglers should note, however, that they are required to use two keep nets, one for the carp and the other for silver fish.
Most anglers fishing the pole tend to opt for a carp match pole rigged with a six to eight elastic in winter and either a 12 or 14 in summer. When fishing open water they also tend to use a puller bung which gives them more control when playing the bigger fish whilst still enabling them to use the same tackle for the silvers.
The most popular hook sizes tend to be 10, 12 or 14 for the carp and 14 or 16s for the silvers.
When it comes to baits, all popular baits work well and there are no bait bans. Soft hooker pellets, sweetcorn, maggots, caster, worm, bread and paste are all popular whilst several regulars swear by tinned macaroni.
Regular feeding of the swim with small feeder pellets and sweetcorn usually prove effective at drawing the fish into a swim and holding them there.
Because Lily Pool is so shallow anglers usually fish on the bottom close to the weeds, although they must turn fish into open water as soon as they strike or they will bolt for cover in the roots.
Because Lily Pool is only a few yards from the car park and because the banks are fairly flat and even it is suitable for disabled anglers, although the going can get a bit wet and sticky after prolonged spells of rain. Willow Pool also has good banks but is slightly further away from the car park.
Some more shots of Lily Pool near Ledbury
A similar water to Lily Pool but with more trees and shrubs on the banks to provide cover, Willow Pool is for many anglers even more attractive and appealing although it holds the same mix and size of fish as its neighbour.
Once again the banks are flat and even and anglers can make their way around the entire pool on a grass pathway which leads to the 13 or so pegs.
Because Willow Pool has an island and is irregular in shape it has plenty of interesting bays and features to fish to, making it an interesting venue which is easy to fish.
Once again, Willow is suitable for pole, waggler or feeder fishing although those fishing a loaded waggler to get to fish near the island will want to clip off their line once they have found the correct distance to ensure they don't become snagged in the overhanging leaves and branches.
However, as with most waters there is no need to fish far out because the carp and silver fish are often to be found patrolling the margins, particularly in warmer weather. This means that it usually pays to bait up two swims at the start of your session, one in the margins and the other in more open water.
A mix of feeder pellets and sweetcorn with the addition of maggots and casters or other hook samples works well and baiting two swims enables anglers to take a few fish from each without spooking the fish in the shallow water.
As with Lily Pool the most popular baits tend to be sweetcorn, soft hooker pellets, paste, maggots, caster, worm and bread although because of the large head of carp and silver fish in the water almost anything goes. As with Lily Pool there are no bait bans.
Because the fish feed well on traditional baits there is no need to use sophisticated carping techniques or baits.
Although many anglers fish anything up to 10lb line and Size 10 or 12 hooks because of the good head of carp, it is possible to get away with fishing lighter tackle as there is plenty of open water in which to play the fish.
As a result, going as light as 5lbs to 6lbs line strength to a Size 10, 12 or 14s hook shouldn't present a problem as long as you don't try to bully the fish once they are hooked.
Some more shots of Willow Pool near Ledbury
How to get there...
Redbank Pools can be found a short drive off Ledbury ring road just past the UBL factory on the road to Little Marcle. Anglers traveling from further afield can reach the fishery from the M5 motorway.
If traveling into Ledbury from Bromyard and the north, turn right onto the ring road just after the railway bridge and continue to the next roundabout where you turn left onto the A417 Leddon Way following the black signs for UBL. Continue over the next roundabout and at the one after that turn right towards Little Marcle. Drive past the UBL factory on the left and the entrance to Redbank Pools is on the right about 100 yards further on.
If traveling from Hereford, turn right at the roundabout on the A417 Leddon Way and follow the directions above. Those travelling from the east of Ledbury should again join the A417 ring road rather than drive into Ledbury, go straight on at the first roundabout staying on the A417 and turn left towards Little Marcle at the second roundabout. Drive past the UBL factory on the left and the entrance to Redbank Pools is on the right about 100 yards further on.
For those traveling from further afield, Ledbury can be reached from Junction 2 of the M50 motorway
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