Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on the 10th May that some restrictions are being eased, including access to some sports, there has been much speculation that this could include fishing.
We know that many of you are keen to get back to the bankside with rods out in the water. However, at present, it is still unclear whether or not fisheries can re-open and if they can, the conditions that we may need to meet to be able to do so. Until there is clear guidance that we can re-open and the conditions under which we may do so, then we will remain closed.
Nevertheless, we are optimistic that fisheries will re-open soon, whether that be on Wednesday (13th May) or in the very near future. However, it is very likely that any access to fisheries will be conditional, ensuring that we take all reasonable and responsible measures to protect both anglers and fishery personnel alike and to ensure that the fishery does not become a potential source of new infection. Unfortunately, whilst we can plan for some of the more obvious conditions, we cannot plan to meet all possible conditions until we know what they are.
Additionally there are a number of practical logistical problems that we know we will need to address. For example, we know that maintaining social distancing will be a criteria. However, a number of swims on our specimen lakes are “doubles” which means that we will possibly have to reduce the number of planned bookings that we have.
So, in order to meet these challenges we are planning on re-opening the fishery (as and when we can) in stages. The first anglers that will be permitted back to the fishery will be pre-existing season ticket holders i.e. anyone in possession of a valid 2020/21 season ticket.
As soon as we are able, we will expand this to include the sale of new season tickets and day tickets for the general coarse lakes. And lastly we will re-open the specimen lakes.
We know that this will be a disappointment, particularly for those with bookings on the specimen lakes. However, these measures are necessary to ensure that we play our part in bringing the Covid 19 pandemic to an end.
There is a strong possibility that things will change quickly over the next few days, so please check back for updates regularly over the next few days. We will try and keep everything as up-to-date as we can.
In the meantime we will continue to refund anyone who cannot fish their bookings on the specimen lakes.