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Baden Hall

One of the largest pleasure and ‘Big Fish’ venues in the country with 10 waters on a 70-acre site near Stafford

Baden Hall Fishery facts and features

Carp to over 51lb
Match fishing available
Obtain tickets from Reception before fishing
Automated coin-operated ticket machines available
On-site cafe with food delivered
On-site tackle shop for with bait
24-hour and longer stay tickets available
Deposit required for specimen waters
On-line booking available
Superb pleasure fishing waters

Over the past few years Baden Hall has established itself as one of the largest pleasure fisheries in the country – now with a total of 10 waters covering more than 70 acres and over 300 pegs. Eight of the pools are available for match bookings, holding between 10 and 50 pegs per pool, whilst two pools are reserved for pleasure anglers and are never let out for matches, thus ensuring over 100 pegs are always available for the day ticket angler with carp reaching nearly 40lbs, bream 11lbs and tench 10 lbs.

Specimen lakes are producing some big fish

The newest additions to the fishery are the Pintail pleasure and match lake which opened in winter 2013 and The Quarry and Bridge Specimen Lakes, new big fish waters which opened in 2010 and are now throwing up fantastic weights – Quarry already holding the venue record.

The fishery gates are open between 6.00am and 9.00pm in summer and 6.00am and 7.00pm in winter with Day Tickets and information on where’s fishing well being readily available from Reception which opens between 7.00am and 6.00pm in summer and 8.00am and 5.00pm in winter.

Anglers can book their tickets online, via the Baden Hall website or should obtain their tickets from Reception before fishing, although those who arrive before it opens should go to a peg and set up before collecting their ticket from Reception. Alternatively, they can pay at one of the automated ticket machines which only accept coins and do not issue change.

Fantastic food, delivered to your peg

Cooked breakfasts and evening meals are now available in the cafe on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holiday Monday mornings between 7.30am and 10.30am. Food deliveries can be requested and made for anglers fishing the Specimen Lakes.

There are car parks and toilets at various locations along the drive and a hard road is planned to the Duck Pond which is an attractive out-of-the-way mature water. Baden Hall also has a wide selection bait in its on-site Tackle Shop in Reception, where details of the fishery’s rules are also on display.

Middle Pool

The main pleasure water at Baden Hall, Middle Pool is currently the largest lake at the venue at some 10 acres – a lot of water for 67 pegs – and is reserved exclusively for pleasure anglers.

Early in 2001 the fish stocks were supplemented by transferring the larger mirror and common carp from Dam Pool when Dam became the main match water at Baden Hall. Because it is a pleasure only water, keepnets are not allowed. There are a number of promontories and bays along this water, some of which are very deep, whilst the deeper water, up to 14 feet and therefore excellent in winter, is along the rugby pitch side in the low numbers.

Specimen Bream

An aerial photograph in Reception clearly shows this area. Pegs 11 and 12 are noted for good catches of bream, the best of which was 10lbs 8oz. The original stream bed runs from the high 40s to the centre of the lake, turns right and borders the deep water down to the bottom end of the pool.

There is a definite ledge here which is worth noting for two reasons: firstly as a patrol area for the fish and secondly as a potential hazard – when fighting, the fish nearly always head for the deeper water. The bay at the top end of the pool, by the drive, has a depth of some five feet and slopes gently to eight or nine feet in the middle. This is a popular spot.

Because the bay pegs are near to the car park and are spacious, easy to get to and look over open water, they generally tend to be popular. For many anglers, the fact they are highly productive is a bonus! Middle Pool holds the largest number of carp of all the Baden Hall waters with specimens now averaging between 10lbs and 201lbs. There is also a good head of silver fish including barbel to over 12lbs.

Estimate pleasure catches of 250lbs

Middle Pool is also a good runs water anytime of the year which makes it very popular in the winter months. Because of the keepnet ban, pleasure catches can only be estimated, but the best have certainly been in excess of 250lbs.

Recommended baits

When fishing for the carp, these are caught on most modern and traditional methods with floating, ledgered and waggler baits all being successful in summer whilst the bream and tench fish best on feeder, tip or waggler. Favoured baits for the carp are meat, corn, boilies, particles and pellets plus all surface baits whilst the silvers and bream, roach and tench tend to fall to corn, red maggot, pellet, paste and bread.

The Dam Match Pools

Another change at the fishery is that the original Dam Pool, formerly a trout fishery which was converted into a mixed coarse fish lake in 2000, has been drained down and divided into two. All the original fish have been moved into the dam end and this part is now the Dam Pool.

As part of the work, the margins have been deepened to three feet shelving to a maximum of 14 feet to try and bring the fish closer to the banks. The pool has 28 pegs and has been stocked with fish from the Dam Match Pool. Carp range from 10lbs to over 16lbs, the bream go to 4lbs and chub, tench and roach range from 8ozs to 4lbs. Best baits on this water are all kinds of boilies, pellets, particles and floating baits

The other end of the original Dam Pool is now called The New Dam Pool and has been substantially deepened and shelved. Like the Old Dam Pool it goes down to about 14 feet. This pool holds 22 pegs and is a good match water for the smaller club. It has been restocked from scratch with stocky carp, bream, roach and other silver fish which range from 8ozs to 4lbs. Best baits on this water are proving to be corn, meat, pellet, paste and bread.

Old Match Pool

Work was completed on deepening, revamping and restocking Old Match Pool in 2001. The first water to be reached on entering the fishery, this four-and-a-half acre 45-peg lake has a boomerang-shaped island in the middle and a bay at the far end. The Old Match Pool was adjacent to The Lodge but the two have been opened as one water to create an excellent pleasure and match venue. It is stocked with carp to 16lbs, tench and barbel to 3lbs, orfe to 8oz and small bream and skimmers.

Old Match Pool is best fished on pole or waggler out to the channel or on feeder rod when casting towards the islands. However, in summer it is always worth going for the chub by fishing up in the water as these can provide exciting sport. Favoured baits are small pieces of luncheon meat, corn, pellets, paste or bread.

Depths on The Old Match range from three to nine feet with three feet being found around the margins before the water deepens to about five feet some eight metres out and down to nine feet in the channel which runs between eight and 12 metres out. Best baits tend to be meat, corn and floating bread and dog biscuits in summer and maggots, caster, worm and bread in winter. Again, pellets are a good year-round bait.

The Doughnut

Circular in shape with a central island, the Doughnut holds 26 pegs and was purposely created as a match water with the pole angler in mind, being in effect a circular canal. Because it is a match water, kepnets are allowed – although two should be used. Built to the same specifications as Drakes and Dykes Canals, Doughnut is nine feet deep in the track, has a three feet deep, six feet wide ledge which shelves down from the far bank and a steeply falling bank from each peg. At six feet out depths are between seven and nine feet.

To ensure consistent catches throughout the year, the Doughnut has been stocked with a variety of fish including carp to over 10lbs and chub, tench and barbel to 4lbs. There are also plenty of skimmers and small golden orfe and roach to bulk out weights. As you would expect of a water of this kind, pole and waggler are the best methods to use when fishing Doughnut with meat, corn, pellets, paste and maggots once again being the best baits to use.

Quarry Specimen Carp Lake

A former gravel pit where extraction stopped in 2000, each peg on the new Quarry Specimen Carp Lake has its own individual fishing hut, complete with staging onto the bank, which is large enough for anglers’ beds. An unhooking mat, landing net and weigh sling are supplied with each cabin. Costing £35.00 for two rods per person for 24 hours, the new water is the deepest close to the railway bridge where up to eight feet of water can be found just three-rod lengths out before dropping to a maximum of 12 feet along the spine of the lake. Whilst the banks are shallow between Pegs 7 to 11, they shelve steeper along the railway bank from Pegs 1 to 7.

A mix of gravel, sand beds

Although much of the bottom is gravel and sand with some silt, there is a large open bed of gravel out from Pegs 16 to 18. In summer there is also a weed bed out from Pegs 14 and 15 which tends to hold a lot of fish. As yet there are no known ‘hot spots’. Because the water can become quite weedy in summer with silkweed, most anglers tend to use solid pva bags or pva foam around the bait. Another alternative is to use chod rigs and to lead about to find clearer spots, of which there are plenty.

In calm weather when the surface is like glass, floating baits do well, particularly with anglers targeting fish in their swims or luring them to the surface with free offerings of dog biscuits or bread crust. At other times the faithful old maggot also does the trick, with a maggot clip loaded with 15 to 20 wriggling baits on a medium-sized clip on a D-ring taking plenty of fish in the right conditions.

The record stands at 49lb

The current lake record stands at 49lb 5oz for common carp and 48lb 4oz for mirrors. There are between 50 and 60 fish over 30lbs including known 40lb fish with the average size now around the 30lb mark. Because of the size of the fish in the Quarry Specimen Carp Lake, anglers must use at least 15lb line and a minimum Size 10 hook, although most anglers use anything between a Size 4 and a Size 10.

Bait recommendations

A multitude of different baits work on the Quarry, but Baden Hall stipulates that only freezer baits must be used and not shelf life boilies. It also pays to talk to the staff in Reception to find out which baits are working well. Access to the new water is between 12.00pm and 2.00pm and anglers must be ready to depart by 12.00 noon the following day as this is a ‘lock-in’ water.

The Quarry Lake is one of three of Baden Hall’s specimen lakes and has 18 single pegs. The fishery supplies cradle weigh slings and landing nets which are kept in containers situated on the pegs on all three of the specimen lakes. There is also an age restriction policy of 18 years to fish all three of the specimen lakes plus a strict ruling of no dogs, visitors or companions being allowed.

Bookings must be made leaving a non-refundable deposit to be paid in advance to secure swims. Bait can also be purchased from Baden Hall’s fully stocked tackle and bait shop located in Reception. Full rules for the Quarry Lake will be posted in Reception and copies will be put on Baden Hall’s website.

Bridge Specimen Lake

Bridge Lake is Baden Hall’s second big specimen carp water. Some 13 acres in size it ranges from eight to 14 feet deep and has 10 pegs, all on the same bank, about 30 yards apart with a double peg in the middle for anglers who want to fish together. Bridge has been developed as a bivvy water to cater for the anglers who don’t like to fish from huts.

Anglers are reminded that supplements and rulings are the same as for Quarry Lake. Stocking took place in 2005/2006 and the venue is expecting the carp to be 20lb plus, although the pike are an unknown size. Up to the end of June 2016 it was known that the lake contained numberous fish over 30lbs together with a large head of 20lb fish to go for.

Glovers Specimen Lake

Glovers is the newest of Baden Hall’s specimen lakes and again has the same supplements and rulings as The Quarry whilst offering an exciting range of fish that have hardly been fished for. At around 10 acres in size but with only eight pegs it is the smallest of the venue’s three specimen lakes. The swims are set up like Bridge Lake with the pegs situated along one bank so that anglers can cast to the far bank or fish the nearside margins without disturbing fellow anglers.

Glovers Specimen is good for large Carp and Bream

The biggest fish to come out of Glovers in 2015 was a lovely common weighing in at 35lbs 4oz which was caught by Nick Harper. Like Quarry and Bridge lakes, Glovers is a former sand and gravel quarry with crystal clear water, an abundance of natural food and a great mix of wildlife.

Glovers is Baden Hall’s newest water which opened in May 2015 and has already produced numerous mid to upper twenties carp and several different thirties – as well as specimen fish of other species including a 16lb bream which was taken by Steve Wright. The lake itself has been in existence longer than the other two specimen waters as it was the first area quarried at Baden Hall and until May 2015 had been unfished apart from some trial fishing.

Many uncaught fish

There are still a lot of uncaught fish in Glovers and for this reason it has been popular since opening. Again, like Bridge Lake the fishing is from one bank and the average distance is around 80-90 yards, but bait boats can also be used on this water.

A lot of fish are caught from the far margins just off the front of the reeds where chod rigs and stiff hinge rigs have been popular. Cell and Monster Tiger nut frozen boilies have caught a lot of fish with white and yellow pop-ups fished over the top. Like everywhere the fish like surface baits which fall to zig rigs. If you go around to the far bank in front of your swim and see the fish up in the water it is worth trying these tactics.

Pintail Lake

Pintail is Baden Hall’s newest pleasure and match water which was opened for fishing over the winter in 2013. The Pool holds 15 pegs and has a good stocking of quality roach, bream, perch and gudgeon. Pintail is a doughnut shape pool with depths of around seven feet.

To the island, anglers are looking at around 10 to 12 metres if fishing the Pole. This pool is a silverfish water that has been developed for winter fishing, so although still good in the summer it is the best suited for winter match style fishing.


No day ticket sessions are available on Middle Pool on Fridays and Saturdays. Disabled anglers should bring their rod licence or badge and identification. Single tickets are valid for 24 hours covering 12.00 noon until 12.00 noon each day. A non-refundable booking deposit is required for all the specimen waters. Anglers must be 18 or over to fish the Specimen lakes and guests are not allowed. Bookings can be made online at Please note, that guests are not allowed to fish.

Day ticket Prices

Day Day guest 24hr 24hr guest
Middle Pool
Middle Pool 12.00 5.00 25.00 10.00
Lodge Pool
Lodge Pool 12.00 5.00 25.00 10.00
Dam Pool
Dam Pool N/A N/A 25.00 10.00
Doughnut 10.00 5.00 N/A N/A

Specimen Carp prices

Single Week Whole lake 24hr
Bridge Pool
Bridge Pool 30.00 210.00 600.00
Glovers Pool
Glovers Pool 30.00 210.00 480.00
Quarry Pool
Quarry Pool 35.00 245.00 1260.00

How to get there

Baden Hall Fishery is situated on the Eccleshall to Swynnerton Road, just South of Cold Meece.
From the M6 junction 14 take the A5013 to Eccleshall, turn right at the mini roundabout and go straight across the next mini roundabout.
On leaving Eccleshall take the right hand fork towards Swynnerton, the Fishery can be found on the right hand side after approximately 2 miles.
Alternatively from the M6 junction 15 take the A519 towards Eccleshall and follow the signs to Swynnerton (left fork).
Drive through Swynnerton, through Cold Meece, across the railway line, up the hill and Baden Hall is on the left. Please enter through the Fishery Entrance, not the Private Drive.

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