TOP Surrey venue Bury Hill is opening a lake which only holds 20lb plus tagged carp following the award of a five-figure Government grant.

And to allow their growth rates to be monitored and to deter theft, each fish will carry an electronic Tracer tag, supplied by fisheries expert Bruno Broughton.

The tags carry a microchip and are identical to those used on dogs, cats and other animals.

The £300,000 project will see a prestigious, purpose-built four acre lake created at the Dorking venue, and this will be initially stocked with 100 carp, each weighing a minimum of 20lb.

Fishery managers will be intrigued to learn that £60,000 of the costs will be met through the Government and European Union’s Rural Enterprise Scheme (RES).

Bury Hill Fisheries boss David de Vere said: “Although we are one of the leading day ticket fisheries in the country, successfully catering for the pleasure, match and specimen angler, we cannot allow the business to stand still.

“We have been monitoring the big carp market for some time and believe this particular sector of the sport is the one area which continues to grow.

“With an increasing number of anglers wanting to fish Old Bury Hill at night – and with popular local waters becoming overcrowded – it makes perfect sense for us to build a purpose-built lake to meet the demands of this growing market.”

The project’s success hinged on the grant aid and the ability to acquire top quality, British fish which could be stocked into the rich water alongside mature parkland at the back of the historic main lake.

David added: “The grant was the culmination of months of painstaking work by myself and fisheries management consultant Dr Bruno Broughton. Together, we researched, completed and submitted an extremely detailed application for RES grant aid and, following discussion with very helpful Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs advisers, I am delighted our efforts have been successful. The award is a real feather in the Bury Hill cap.”

He was also pleased that the members-only fishery would demonstrate the innovative microchip scheme and commented: “The new lake will provide the perfect showcase for the benefit of the ‘chips’. They are harmless, permanent and invisible but their unique 16-digit code numbers are revealed when a special, hand-held scanner is passed close to the fish. In addition to the biosecurity and biological monitoring benefits, there will be no doubt about the identity of each fish or its previous capture history.”



Tackle and Guns