Since it opened in 2012, Islands Carp Fishery has become one of the most popular day ticket lakes in Wiltshire. With its unique design, it is easy to see why anglers are so eager to fish here.
When fish farmer Tony Campbell and grounds excavator Paul Millard joined forces to create CM Fisheries, their initial focus was to get Islands Carp Fishery open to anglers. They have since added an additional lake on the same site, with more lakes planned for the future.
Having heard good things about the lake, I decided to book myself on for 36 hours to see if it lived up to the hype.
Islands Carp Fishery
Islands Carp Fishery is quite unique in the way that it has been constructed. With strategically positioned islands, each of the 12 pegs makes you feel like you are fishing on your own exclusive lake. It has an enviable stock too, with multiple fish already exceeding 30lb in weight.
Excellent lake design
No shower facilities
Directions To Islands Carp Fishery
Islands Carp Fishery is located on the outskirts of the town of Mere, and approximately 10 miles from Warminster.
With the fishery being situated just a few miles from the A303 and A350, it is easily accessible to anglers that live locally or those that travel from further afield.
All fishing must be booked in advance via the Islands Carp Fishery website, so you can simply arrive and slot into your selected peg.
Islands Carp Fishery At A Glance
Islands Carp Fishery is 4.5 acres in size and has no less than 6 islands. The islands, along with the spits of land that are present in every peg, separate the water and ensures that each angler fishes in their own area of water.
There are 12 pegs in total, some of which are suitable to be used as doubles. Each peg has been created so that all anglers have access to fish to at least one of the islands. Although the spits of land are more predominant in some pegs than others, they can also be targeted from every peg. With clay holes, plateaus and gravel patches also found in the majority of pegs, this lake has a host of features to satisfy most anglers.
Stock Levels And Biggest Carp
Islands Carp Fishery has a stock of approximately 400 carp, meaning it offers close to 100 carp per acre of water.
The average size carp is mid/upper double-figures, with it estimated that 100 of them have crossed the 20lb barrier.
There are more than 10 different carp that have weighed in excess of 30lb, with a number of specimens edging ever closer to the magical barrier.
As this was my first trip to Islands Carp Fishery, I didn’t have a particular peg in mind. The online booking system means that you have to choose your peg ahead of your visit, and with only peg 2 (Millards) and peg 8 (Blounts Corner) available, I opted for the latter as it offered more in the way of features.
After speaking with the bailiff while he was doing his rounds, he advised that peg 4 (Elysium) and peg 9 (Long Chuck) get booked up very quickly and are rarely available, though he did say that fish come out from every peg on the lake.
I did a lap of the lake before I left and can honestly say that every peg has its own appeal and I wouldn’t turn down the opportunity to fish any of them on future visits. However, it is worth bearing in mind that pegs 6, 7 and 8 are quite a distance from the car park, so the use of a barrow would definitely be required if fishing these pegs.
Successful Baits At Islands Carp Fishery
The way that Islands Carp Fishery is designed means that there are multiple patrol routes available. As a result of this, the carp don’t tend to stay static and in one place for too long.
Most of the usual suspects such as boilies, pellets, corn etc have all tripped up some of the specimens in the past, though fishing for a bite at a time initially tends to yield the best results.
Once the residents of the lake have moved into your peg, introducing a bit of bait to build things up has been known to deliver multiple hits of fish.
Although there are no shower facilities on-site, there is a flushing toilet with running water situated in the car park.
The toilet is kept clean and is well-stocked with everything you need to be able to clean and sanitise before and after use.
The gate to the fishery is integral to the perimeter otter fencing, so must be kept closed at all times.
The car park can accommodate multiple cars, so even if anglers travel to the lake separately to double-up in in a peg, there is still plenty of room for everyone to park.
The car park area is monitored by CCTV for added security, while alarm systems are also in place.
Tickets can be booked for 12 hours at a cost of £15, while 24 hour tickets are priced at £25.
With many of the pegs being large enough for 2 anglers to share, day tickets on this basis cost £26 (£13 per angler) or £44 (£22 per angler) for 24 hours.
Discounts are available for bookings of 5 days or more and ticket prices are slashed by as much as 30% during the winter months.
Islands Carp Fishery’s reputation has rocketed in recent years and that is testament to the way that the fishery is operated and managed.
The unique design of this fishery is arguably the main selling point that keeps drawing anglers back and has been responsible for building up a loyal army of followers.
Have you ever fished at Islands Carp Fishery? If you have, how did you get on? Please let me know in the comments.