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Whetstone Gorse Fishery

Two attractive fishing lakes in Leicestershire offering coarse fishing and carp to 30lbs plus silvers with few rules.

Key facts about Whetstone Gorse Fishery

Informal two pool fishery
Carp to 30lbs
Silver fish include crucians, tench and perch
Barbel to 6lbs
Small club match bookings taken
Quality fishing in natural environment
Keepnets allowed on one pool
Day ticket fees collected on the bank
All techniques work well
Prawns and mussels good for bigger carp

Whetstone Gorse Fishery was originally developed on two sites, each with two pools. However, when the original owner retired from his farming business some three years or so ago, the original two pools were closed and all the fish relocated to the remaining pools, known locally as Phase 2.

Originally developed in 2000 on a site just over a mile outside Countesthorpe on the Willoughby Road, the emphasis was firmly placed on working hand in hand with nature whilst providing quality fishing in an increasingly natural environment. A prime consideration was the welfare of both the fish and local wildlife.

The result is two attractive mature lakes which offer a variety of fishing and a relaxed atmosphere in natural surroundings with few rules except that only barbless hooks to a maximum of Size 10 are to be used and that boilies, jokers, bloodworm, nuts and beans are not permitted as bait.

In October 2020, the fishery was taken over by Paul Longland, a keen angler and wildlife enthusiast. Having been a regular at the lakes from shortly after they opened, when the opportunity arose Paul jumped at the chance to fulfil a lifetime ambition of running his own fishery. The fishery will continue to be run in keeping with the original ethos, with the emphasis on maintaining a friendly and natural feel whilst at the same time encouraging the local wildlife to flourish, which distinguishes it from many other ‘commercial’ fisheries

The two lakes have been renamed. The previous mixed fish lake is now called Mallard Lake whilst the carp lake is now known as Moorhen Pool.

Mallard Lake

Mixed Fish lake supports a great variety of fish for anglers.

Originally known as the Mixed Fish Lake because this is where the largest number of species are stocked, this is the larger of the two lakes and despite its original name is the water where the larger carp are to be found with several fish over 20lbs. The biggest carp to come out in 2019 weighed in at 28lbs.

Plenty of room for anglers

Mallard lake is the water on the right as you enter the car park. Oval in shape, it has a central island running down the spine giving 30 metres of water between the bank and the island. To preserve the natural feel of this water the pegs have been spaced 10 metres apart which provides plenty of room for both pleasure and match anglers.

Great barbel stocks

Built with sides which slope at 45 degrees to an average depth of six feet and then back up at 45 degrees to the island, one of the main features is that it saw the addition five years ago of some 200 barbel which now regularly top the 6lb mark and are caught frequently and have proved a great hit with anglers.

Those who fish this lake say they love the barbel because they give a really good account of themselves. Most of the barbel fall to baits of meat or pellets.

Large carp in Mallard Lake

This Lake is also popular with carp anglers because they can target the common and mirror carp which average 5lbs to 6lbs in weight but run to 28lbs with plenty of double figure fish. There are also plenty of crucian carp to about 2lb, tench to 3lbs, perch to about 1lb and a good head of roach which average 8oz but run to 1lb.

Best places on the lake to fish

Mallard Lake is a good match water which fishes evenly whichever peg you draw. It is shallowest at the lily ends of the island and every peg has at least six feet of water in front of it.

As it to be expected it is worth fishing the track between the bank and the island but fishing in the margins and close to the island are also very effective, leading to average match catches of over 40lbs although currently the four-hour match record stands at just over 80lbs.

Best baits tend to be small pieces of meat, sweetcorn, soft hooker pellets, paste, bread and casters and maggots, although prawns and mussels can also be good for the larger carp

Moorhen Pool

Most of the anglers on Carp and Mixed fish lake tend to fish for the commons and mirrors.

Originally known as the carp lake, Moorhen Pool is kidney shaped and has a central island along its spine giving anglers a feature to fish towards.

With 16 metres of water between the bank and the island, the sides are again cut at 45 degrees to a six feet deep central track before rising at 45 degrees to the island. At each end of the island there is a two feet deep ledge which is planted with reeds.

Fish hotspots

Naturally it pays to fish to this ledge as the fish tend to hold up around the reeds, so fishing either on top of it where there are no reeds or down the slope and at the bottom of the slope can give great results.

However, anglers should note that if they are fishing near the top of the slop or on the ledge hooked fish immediately bolt for the cover of the reeds so anglers need to fish heavier tackle and turn hooked fish quickly into open water after as soon as they strike.

Mirror and Common carp

Most anglers fishing moorhen pool go after the commons and mirrors, the main fish species in the water, which average 6lbs with plenty of low doubles between 10lbs and 12lbs. The biggest to be caught in 2019 weighed 17lbs – a new lake record which was taken early in summer.
Like Mallard Lake there are also a good head of crucian carp – again to around 1lb, with the best to date weighing in at over 2lbs – and some ghost carp, although these are not as big as the commons or mirrors at around the 5lbs mark with a smattering of bigger fish.
The silver fish species are largely made up of rudd which run to 1lb, and perch to about 8oz.
One of the features of the rudd is that they are in pristine condition and a delight to catch. They also help to bump up match weights with the current match record standing at about 80lbs.

Fishing around the island and margins

When fishing Moorhen Pool it pays to fish to the island or in the margins whilst in the winter months the carp always tend to hang out where there are bullrushes.

Best baits tend to be meat, sweetcorn, paste, pellets and bread with prawns and mussels again good for the bigger carp. Maggot and caster can produce good bags of rudd and will often tempt the carp on those days when larger baits are not the order of the day, especially in the colder months.


Anglers should start fishing – day ticket fees will be collected on the bank. Anglers under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Keepnets are charged at an additional £1.00 but must be emptied every four hour. Telephone 07802 233355 to book matches.


Ticket Costs

Adult Jr/OAP/Disabled
Day (6am-dusk)
10.00 (Max 2 rods)
Day (6am-dusk) 10.00 (Max 2 rods) 5.00
Evening (after 5pm)
5.00 (Max 2 rods)
Evening (after 5pm) 5.00 (Max 2 rods) 3.00
OAP/Disabled Membership
80.00 (May-April)
OAP/Disabled Membership - 80.00 (May-April)

Match Fees

Per Peg
Per Peg 7.00
Whole Pool Occupancy
6.00 per peg
Whole Pool Occupancy 6.00 per peg

Rules and conditions

Maximum hook size is Size 10. Boilies, jokers, bloodworm, nuts and beans should not be used as bait. Keep-nets are allowed on the mixed pool and fish over 3lbs must be returned to the water immediately.

Anglers using keepnets on the mixed pool should empty them at 12 noon and 4.00pm to ensure the fish do not become stressed.

How to get there

Whetstone Gorse is a short drive from the Leicester end of the M69 motorway.
On leaving the motorway take the A5460 signposted Fosse Park, Leicester and then branch left and at the roundabout take the first exit onto the A563 signposted Ring Road, Leicester South and East.
At the Fosse Park Junction continue forward on the A563 and at the Soar Valley Way traffic lights turn right onto the A426 following the signs for Rugby.
Go over the next four roundabouts, staying on the A426, and then at the staggered crossroads turn left into Countesthorpe Road.
After 200 yards turn right into Hill Lane and then right into Willoughby Road.
A short way down here you will see the entrance to Phase Two on the left along Willoughby Lane.
Get directions on Google Maps

You may also be interested in

If you enjoy fishing in Leicestershire then why not take a look at our other fishing lakes in Leicestershire including, Temple Farm, Peatling Pools Fishery, Cropston Reservoir, Little Pit Fishery and Little Fishery Farm.


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