Twyford Farm Pool
Reached down a track which runs through a typical Evesham apple and plum orchard, this well-kept pool may look more at home in a Local Authority park but in fact holds some top quality fish including specimen perch to 5lbs, carp to 30lbs and roach to 3lbs.
The square part of the pool (pictured below) is the deepest water at around 14ft and formed the original irrigation reservoir for the surrounding orchards. When the fishery was taken over by May Vince in 1987, she extended the pool and developed its current shape prior to installing the wooden log trim which makes the bank more stable for anglers. The newer part of the pool is generally two feet deep around the marging sloping gradually to eight feet for most of its depth and around nine feet at its deepest.
Although the carp run to 30lbs, the average size caught is between 6lbs and 10lbs whilst the Crucians which have been caught to 3lbs also give plenty of good sport. The water is also popular because of its head of quality roach which average 10oz to 1lb but which again have been caught up to 3lbs.
However, it is perhaps as a specimen perch fishery that Twyford Farm should be best known. Perch are the predominant species in the water and float-fished single or double maggot are bound to attract the smaller fish, making it an ideal place to take younger anglers looking to take up the sport. During the past two seasons perch to 5lbs have been taken and verified, making it a popular venue - particularly in winter - with perch specimen hunters equipped with lob worms and maggots for bait.
Chub and bream are the two remaining species to be found at Twyford Farm Pool, with the chub averaging about 3lbs and very few smaller specimens seeming to be caught. The bream run to 4lbs and stocks are to be supplemented in May with the addition of more fish around the 2lb mark.
When fishing Twyford Farm Pool the secret is to give small amounts of free offerings at regular quarter of an hour or 20 minute intervals to keep the fish in your swim. But be warned, do not overfeed - an extra handful of casters can ruin your day.
Despite holding Mirrors and Commons to 30lbs, Twyford Farm Pool does not profess to be a carp fishery, but instead aims to offer a mix of species for pleasure anglers. Indeed, the water is only used for match fishing during the river close season between March 14 and what used to be 'The Glorious 16th'. Having said that, 100lb bags of carp are taken, although as a general rule mixed bags are more commonly taken, although in summer the bigger fish tend to push the smaller ones out when serious feeding gets underway.
As a general rule of thumb, all modern carp fishing methods used with luncheon meat, sweetcorn or paste baits seem to work well whereas anglers fishing for the bream should fish three metres to 11m out about four inches over depth using a one gram float at 11 metres or a quarter gram float at three metres.
Anglers fishing for the chub tend to favour waggler or feeder close in or towards the island using caster, sweetcorn or luncheon meat as bait.
The River Avon
Regarded by anglers internationally as one of the prime stretches of the River Avon for float fishing, Twyford Farm Angling's one-and-a-half mile stretch has been a regular venue for the Drennan Super League (West Midlands) and is ranked as one of the top five river venues in the UK for match fishing.
Open matches are held on the stretch every Wednesday (draw 2.00pm - fishing 3.00pm until 8.00pm) and every Saturday (draw 9.30am - fishing 11.00am until 4.00pm) from June to March and is available for club matches throughout the year.
Noted for its specimen barbel up to 11lbs and bream to 5lbs, the stretch also holds roach to 2lbs, chub to 5lbs and perch to 3lbs. The best pegs for the barbel are said to be 90 to 125 and for the bream 13 to 30. Roach, chub and perch are generally caught throughout the length. Whilst dace are also present, they are not as predominant now as they used to be although the population of tench are thriving and often account for good sized bags, particularly early morning and evening during the summer months by anglers fishing the slower weedier pegs using sweetcorn or worm.
Although an excellent match venue, the river stretch is particularly suitable for pleasure anglers. Not only can nearly all pegs be reached by car but because it lies on the boundary of the Middle and Lower stretches of the Avon, each of which requires a separate navigation licence, the length is not disturbed by too many boats. It is therefore relatively peaceful.
For much of its length the average depth is about six feet, although out in the navigation channel it falls to 14ft. Most anglers fish in six feet or less of water. Best methods for the roach and chub tend to be waggler, stick pole or link leger using a 1.7lb main line to 1lb bottom length and an 18 to 20s hook baited with bronze maggot or caster. The barbel fall mainly to caster or luncheon meat, corn or hemp but obviuously line strengths need to be geared up with 6lb main line to 4lb bottom length recommended and hook sizes scaled up to 10s, 12s, 14s or 16s.
Pole or feeder are the most popular methods for the bream, although small groundbait feeder in the slower and deeper pegs using caster, maggot or worm seems favourite. Three pound main line to 1.7lb bottom lines and 14s to 18 hooks are recommended. Red maggoit is the favoured bait for the perch and virtually any method is successful for catching them.
May led England team to the medals
A founder member of the Evesham Ladies Angling Society where she is still the longest serving member, May Vince was runner-up in the NFA Ladies National held in 1979 on the River Severn at Bridgenorth when she finished with 26lb 8oz of barbel.
In 1989 May was winner of the first Midlands Ladies Open, fished on Upton Warren Pool near Bromsgrove, with 25lb 8oz of carp. Between 1993-1995 she was appointed manager of the first-ever Ladies England Team which took a Bronze Medal in Bulgaria in the first Ladies World Championship, a Silver Medal in France the following year and finished fourth in Hungary in 1995.
Although May is now 'formally' retired, she continues to run Twyford Farm Angling with her son Stuart who is a well-respected angler locally and an active conservationist.
How to get there...
Twyford Farm Angling can be found one mile north of Evesham off the A46 island. After entering the Country Park entrance, drive past the car park and main buildings until you see the sign for the entrance to the fishery. The pool is at the end of the track whilst the river is down to the left.
Click here or on the map for a larger image.
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