The 2017 fishing season at Essex & Suffolk Water′s Hanningfield Reservoir closed on Thursday 30 November, having been open since March.
Over the course of the season there were 11,185 angler visits and 21,602 fish caught, showing again why Hanningfield is now established as the UK′s number one any method trout fishery.
Boats were hired over 2,500 times during the season by anglers keen to get out and explore the various sections of the Reservoir.
The largest trout caught during the season weighed in at a whopping 13lbs, while the largest pike was 16lbs, and the largest perch was over 5lbs. The reservoir was re-stocked with 48,000 trout between March and the end of November.
Jim Norquay, Senior Ranger at Hanningfield Reservoir said: "It′s been an incredibly busy but rewarding year here at the fishing lodge. It′s been fantastic to welcome some new anglers who have given fishing a try for the first and now become completely ‘hooked′, as well as our regular visitors who really help to make this place what it is.
"This year we extended our opening hours and added extra capacity for trout due to demand, and we will continue to look for new ways to improve the fishing experience for our visitors. We′re already looking forward to the start of the new fishing season here in March 2018!"
This year marks the 60th anniversary of Hanningfield Reservoir, which was officially opened in September 1957. Operated by Essex & Suffolk Water, it provides drinking water to over 317,000 homes reaching a population of over 793,000 people. A historic landmark in the Essex countryside, the Reservoir is also home to a visitor centre and nature reserve operated by Essex Wildlife Trust.
One of the highlights at the fishing lodge this year was a special presentation of a special buoy to dedicated angler Harry Hammond, who has been fishing at Hanningfield for over 60 years. Now aged 82, and a former water company employee, Harry has been fishing at the reservoir since it first opened in 1957, and has continued to do so weekly since retiring 22 years ago.
There are 38 boats available for use on Hanningfield Reservoir with two for disabled anglers. The fishing lodge also offers fly fishing tuition courses, a loyalty card scheme for regular visitors and free fishing is available for those under 18-years-old when accompanied by parents and guardians and sharing their catch limit.
The next fishing season will open at Hanningfield in March 2018. For more information see https://www.eswater.co.uk/your-home/leisure.aspx.