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Earlswood Lakes

Three large reservoirs popular with match and pleasure anglers where water levels can change dramatically with the seasons.

Key facts about Earlswood Lakes

Car parks near the lakes
Footpaths around the lakes
Timber platforms with umbrella and bankstick holders
Terry’s Pool available only on season ticket
Engine Pool gives massive match catches
Pegs 5 to 25 on Engine just a short walk from car park
Windmill popular for big bream
Suitable for pole, waggler and feeder fishing
Fishing on Terry’s Pool only on the Engine bank
All baits work well

A prolific match and pleasure angling venue

Earlswood Lakes are three attractive large reservoirs set in pleasant wooded countryside next to the village of Earlswood to the south of Solihull. Nationally renowned as a prolific match venue, it is also popular with pleasure anglers.

Before the end of 1999 all three lakes were operated as unmanaged natural fisheries with the most common species being bream and roach. The quality of fishing was high but the demand from anglers for this type of natural fishery declined through the 1990’s. In 1994 there were over 10,000 angler visits to Earlswood Lakes but by 1997 this had fallen to just 2,500.

Regeneration of the lakes

In a bid to regenerate interest it was decided to substantially alter the way the fishery was operated. In October 1999, Engine Pool was virtually drained dry and most of the stock removed. All of the larger bream were transferred to Windmill Pool and all the other fish were transferred to local canals. Between November 1999 and March 2000 Engine Pool was stocked with five tons of carp averaging eight to 10 ounces each.

At about the same time a new car park, new footpaths and 80 large timber platforms were constructed. All the platforms are fitted with bankstick and umbrella holders. However, anglers are reminded that these are reservoirs and water levels usually go down during the summer months as water is pumped to maintain navigation in the nearby canal. The platforms, therefore, tend not to be useable from early June until mid October depending upon weather conditions.

Engine Pool

Fishing at Earlswood Lakes Engine Pool features 105 pegs, with 5-25 and 60-80 being the most popular.

This 25-acre pool has 105 pegs, 80 of which are large timber platforms with the remainder being along the stone-built dam.

Huge match records

The carp have grown extremely quickly, reaching an average of 8lbs by September 2007. In the 2000 season Engine Pool gained the UK Five-hour match record with a impressive 414lbs 14ozs.

Indeed, catches were becoming so big that the Canal and River Trust’s predecessors felt it had to alter the rules in 2001 to provide extra protection for the fish. This has reduced match weights to “sensible” levels… although some are still being won with more than 200lbs. Despite the rule changes, it is common for weights to come in between 80lbs and 120lbs.

Pleasure anglers regularly catch over 200lbs and the fishery has been widely recognised as the finest of its type in the Midlands and one of the leading fisheries in the UK.

Popular pegs on Engine Pool

The most popular pegs are between 5 and 25 near the new car park, which is only a short walk from the bankside, and between 60 and 80 behind the council houses.

In early summer, Method feeder and pellet is the favoured technique whilst later in the year, as water levels fall, fishing the waggler comes into its own and a greater variety of baits become successful.

It also pays to take a variety of baits as what is favoured by the fish one month can be ignored the next. Meat, pellets, maggots, casters, sweetcorn, paste and worm should cover most eventualities.

Notice for fishing on Engine Pool

Anglers should note that the Method feeder used in conjunction with a pole is not allowed and that, in common with most other fisheries these days, all hooks must be barbless. Naturally, all fish must be landed using a landing net and anglers are advised to take an unhooking mat for the bigger carp.

Parking is available in the Malthouse Lane car park which has a barrier height of two metres and is open from 8.30am until 30 minutes before sunset. Alternative parking is available in the smaller Wood Lane car park.

Windmool Pool

Fishing at Earlswood Lakes Windmill is also 25 acres, and home to specimen carp which have outgrown Engine

Careful fishing on Windmill Pool

Also 25 acres in size, Windmill Pool offers 45 pegs along “The Tins” (east bank) and 12 along the dam. It should be noted that the dam cannot be fished when water levels fall by much more than two feet.

There is a sailing club on this pool and when water levels fall, anglers should take care to sink their lines if they are fishing a feeder at beyond 20 metres. In particular, it is recommended that they should avoid braided lines which float high in the water.

Plenty of bream and specimen carp to catch

Bream are the main quarry in Windmill Pool and the most successful method is to use an open ended feeder loaded with brown crumb and either red maggots or worm – or both – on the hook. There is also a large head of specimen carp which have outgrown Engine Lake and have been moved to Windmill.

Cage feeders are not recommended because there is often a strong tow in the water and a cage feeder releases the ground bait too early as it falls through the water. Obviously the same applies to the Method Feeder, although this problem can usually be overcome by making the Method Mix a little firmer and slightly larger than you normally would to ensure it reaches the bottom quicker and stays together better.

Abundant Roach and Perch

Roach and perch are abundant and good weights can be caught with the pole. Favourite pegs are the 30’s and 40’s on “The Tins” or along the dam if water levels allow.

As would be expected, the waggler also can produce good results although it pays to take a selection including some weighted floats as the fish can sometimes be a fair way out and these should be shotted near the hook length to overcome the tow.

There is not so much of a problem when fishing closer in along the west bank, wher many anglers prefer to fish the open space between the weed beds rather than close in against them as they say the weeds are home to many pike and the silver fish prefer the safety of open water where they can see what’s going on!

Parking facilities

The manager of the Reservoir public house usually does not object to anglers parking in his car park provided that they purchase refreshments at the end of the fishing session!

Terry's Pool

Fishing at Earlswood Lakes Terry's Pooled has been kept as an unmanaged natural fishery

This picturesque 20-acre lake is surrounded by trees which makes much of it difficult or impossible to fish. Also, as most of the pool is set aside for nature conservation, fishing has had to be limited to the bank adjacent to Engine Pool. Fishing is available by season permit only and there is a close season between 15th March and 15th June inclusive.

Natural fishery with a variety of carp and other fish.

Retained as an unmanaged natural fishery, Terry’s Pool contains good stocks of bream, roach and perch as well as tench, pike and some large carp.

Indeed, many of the season permit holders see the carp as their main quarry, although a few also go after the bigger tench which are said to run to over 8lbs but which tend to populate the far end of the lake which cannot be fished.

Fishing on Terry’s Pool

Again, the Method Feeder seems to be one of the most popular techniques, although for the more traditional angler, this is a delightful water to float fish with a range of baits including bread, worm, maggot, paste, meat and sweetcorn.


Additional rods are charged at £3.00 each. All permits with the exception of Terry’s Pool are available from the bailiff on the bank. Matches must be booked in advance.

Engine Pool

Adults Concessionary
Day Tickets - 7:30am - dusk
Day Tickets - 7:30am - dusk 7.00 5.00
Half-day Tickets - 4pm - close (summer), 1pm- close (winter)
Half-day Tickets - 4pm - close (summer), 1pm- close (winter) 5.00 5.00

Windmill Pool

Adults Concessionary
Day Tickets - 7:30am - dusk
Day Tickets - 7:30am - dusk 5.00 4.00
Half-day Tickets - 4pm - close (summer), 1pm- close (winter)
Half-day Tickets - 4pm - close (summer), 1pm- close (winter) 4.00 4.00

Terry's Pool

Season Permit, with fishing on one bank
Season Permit, with fishing on one bank 40.00

How to get there

From the motorways Earlswood Lakes can be reached by leaving the M42 at Junction 4 and heading on the A34 towards Birmingham and Shirley.
At the first traffic light crossroads take the B4102 left towards Dickens Heath and Earlswood staying on the main road until you reach Earlswood.
Get directions on Google Maps

You may also be interested in

If you like the look of this fishery in Warwickshire, then you may also like some of the other fishing lakes and ponds close by including, Drayton Reservoir, Coombe Abbey Fishery, Hopsford Hall Fishery, Kingsbury Water Park, Stockton Reservoir and Riddings Fishery.


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