River Blackwater – Swallowfield
Private T&DFC car park off Ford Lane (north side of the ford).
North bank of river, via public footpath that leads both ways from car park.
16th June to 14th March inclusive, 5.30 am to 10.00 pm
All general club rules, plus one rod only.
About the Venue
Located between Farley Hill and Swallowfield, on this main tributary of the Loddon, the fishery comprises 1,400 m of single bank fishing. The average depth is 1.0m – 1.5m, medium or slow flow, mostly like a mini Loddon, with a few faster areas. There are plenty of silver fish, excellent chub, some barbel, pike and perch; occasional large carp.
Parking is excellent, with a gated area just off Ford Lane, close to the fishery mid-point. Be careful that the Sat Nav doesn’t route you through the ford from the Swallowfield side – it is very deep and rough, not recommended. Approach from the Arborfield/Farley Hill side.
This water is best thought of in three sections. The central section, which runs from about 200m upstream of the ford down to the junction with the River Whitewater, is a feature-rich stretch that is easily accessed from the car park. In the summer and autumn, it is real ‘Mr Crabtree’ fishing, with a wide range of species eager to take baits fished in straightforward float or leger styles. In the winter, this part of the river offers classic roving for the big chub that inhabit the twists and turns, especially those overhung by trees and shrubs.
The lower section is a larger river, augmented by the flow of the Whitewater. Straighter and more open, it suits the angler who wants to set up for a session and stake out one swim.
Finally, the upper section, where the public footpath runs close to the riverside, is the least fished. It extends further than most members think; keep going until the third field boundary and you will see the TDFC top limit sign. Bankside access is quite testing along here, so take a minimum of tackle, but the reward is that you are likely to have the river to yourself.