Linch Hill “The lost lake” what happened to the football?
It was on Marlborough Pool that I met a lot of friends , some that I still have to this day . I was sitting in a swim one day when a bloke called Randell came in and explained that his young son had bought Carp Fever to help to try and catch a carp !. He actually had the book in his hand , showing me the bait he was making up , which was an expensive one compared to the one I gave him my advice on . His son Paul , and dad became very good friends , and it was through his dad that we got access to more waters in the area . You have to understand this was before Linear fisheries , and it becoming the world epicenter for carp fishing !. You see the Linchill complex had another lake , it now no longer excists , but boy am I glad I got to fish it before it was netterd , and disappeared , called Browns . It can be seen on google earth as a white area as you come down the drive , it had a thin arm to a washing area , and a fantastic main lake, Paul had permission to fish for the unknown fish ( nobody even knew if there were carp in there ) through his dad job , and caught a big fish nicknamed ” the football ” at 25lb+ which was possibly the biggest on the complex at that time . I will be fore ever gratefull that they got me a ticket along with a friend , Dave , and we had a look around before I had a day session midweek on it . A fantastic looking lake with true bulrushes , and a thin arm where we found half a dozen carp . Including a couple of mid double commons , not so common in that area ,
I was itching to have a go at them .
The awesome ” Football” the first time
I turned up , and chose to fish near the entrance to the arm , over to the far reeds . I fished half the day without seeing any fish when Randell came for a cuppa in his dinner hour . As we sat chatting a rod ripped off , and after a awesome fight around the reeds the bigun rolled in the net !, first fish was ” the Football ” ! Bloody jammy ! . Photos were taken , handshakes all round , and my mate was gagging to join me for the next trip a couple of weeks later . When we arrived I told Dave to go in my swim , but he wanted to try somewhere different . A few hours later he was to regret it when the big one slipped up again ! as the ” Football ” rolled in my net ! . I was really happy , and forced him to move in as I fancied the tree line up the other end.
The ” Football ” loved my bait , only its third ever capture , twice to me , and it’s last ?
Again fate stepped in as Dave caught the other big fish we had seen , a good 20lb+ fish , a beautiful scaled leeney looking fish , totally different to the Football ! . Although both big mirrors had been out we fished on for other unknown carp , and I was to get lucky again . I caught both the commons we had been watching up the thin arm , I was really chuffed as they were almost a Redmire strain , quiet uncommon in the oxford area at that time !.
I loved catching these commons , and when moved may well have ended up big old kippers
Where does this story go ? , well it’s a bit of a mystery in some ways . The person running the fishing at the time , and putting fish in Christchurch , Willow etc caught my mate and Paul on the complex after dark , and withdrew the ticket / permission !. The fish were moved to stop people fishing Browns , Dave’s mirror eventually came out of Willow pool at a high weight , the commons I caught were put into Christchurch we hear , and as this was 30 years ago must have ended up big old fish . BUT where did the “football ” go ?, who knows , but I’m glad it ended up in my net twice , it’s a fish and little lake I will never forget ! , all due to making friends whilst fishing , how it should be !.
Big thanks to Mark Anderson for writing this article, If anyone has any more info about Browns pit Linch hill also if anyone knows what happened to the football then drop us an email BiteEdge@gmail.com