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The Big Common
By Jack Price
fter spending a
year out from fishing, I found myself
facing an obstacle
many anglers face
nowadays – where
to get a ticket to start fishing without
having to wait. After a few enquiries I
found myself with my name on several waiting lists, but still with
nowhere to fish that I fancied, leaving
my options limited to day tickets or
my previous syndicate, Silvermere,
which had sadly lost two out of the
three big’uns leaving just a handful of
fish to go at. This wasn’t what I was
looking for after my break, so after a
quick think, a venue I’d previously
done a few sessions on a day ticket on
popped into mind, and also that there
were a limited number of season tickets available for anglers the fishery
deemed sensible. This venue was the
Twynersh Complex in Chertsey in
Surrey. This complex contains seven
lakes and has something for everybody from small match sized carp to a
tricky deep weedy specimen lake
with two islands (Pit 3) containing
three mid-thirty fish and a 40lb-plus
common, which caught my attention,
and which were soon to become my
target fish. I started off in late January
doing a few day sessions on one of
the venue’s other waters, Pit 4, and
after a few nights and a word with the
owner, I found myself holding a season ticket for the complex – happy
This venue suited me, as I was yet
to have a 40lb common so the prize
was well worth it. The four fish I had
my sights set on were two mid-thirty
mirrors, one of which was called Baby
Baz, which I had weighed and photographed at 37lb 15oz for another
angler in the past. The second mirror
is an old prehistoric looking slate grey
mirror, known for being tricky to
catch, called the Hoover, which is also
a mid-thirty. The third fish was a midthirty common known as the Big
Headed and finally the biggie, which
is a common known as Nina, which
normally comes out between 41 and
43lbs, although it has been out at
46lb-plus in the past. These four fish
were regarded as the A-Team on Pit 3
and were sought after by the majority
of anglers.
With the complex costing £27 a
night and Pit 3 being relatively tricky
and at that time unproductive, having
that season ticket put me in a position
where I could pop down to the lake
whenever I wanted without having to
fork out each week. By this time it
was February and Pit 3 had just
thrown up its first sign of action in the
shape of a 33lb’er caught by a day
ticket angler followed by a fish of 28
or 29lb four days later.
When better to start, I thought,
when all of a sudden a cold snap
came in and completely killed it for
the next week. Patiently waiting for
the weather to warm up I sat back
and after about ten days we had a
warm spell come in. Taking advantage of this I headed straight over to
Pit 3 intending to fish a swim known
as the Boaty (due to a submerged
boat under a snag bush). I knew this
area provided cover and that it would
hold fish at this time of year. Upon
arrival I was gutted to find another
angler bivvied up in the Boaty swim,
and after a quick scout around I settled in my second choice of swim
known as the Treeline overnight without as much as a bite. Morning
quickly arrived and after speaking to
the angler in the Boaty I quickly
loaded up my barrow ready to move,
and soon jumped in behind him.
Having the rods ready, baited and
set up before I moved into the swim
and not wanting to disturb the swim,
I crept round to the far margin with
my Angling Intelligence baiting
spoon, carefully pushing it out 8m
into the open water then returning to
the actual swim where the rods were
set up. After removing my lead and
rig I cast the leadcore leader over the
floating spoon, walked back to the
spoon, and retrieved it onto the far
bank. Quickly attaching my lead and
rig and placing them in the spoon
with a few crushed Mainline Cell
18mm bottom baits and a tiny bit of
foam, I spooned my rig quietly and
carefully under some overhanging
branches with minimal disturbance
where I’d seen a branch twitch,
which had obviously been knocked
by a moving carp.
Quickly returning to my rod and


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