I was wanting to run out to the North Lock in town today to show you the extraordinary little pods someone has put in for fishermen in the old industrial area on Maltkiln Lane, past where Hoval have been making boilers for seemingly hundreds of years.
It's a wonderful little idea, to have eco-pods for anglers to rest up in while waiting for one of the very large carp that do inhabit this stretch of river. What isn't a wonderful idea is that they have now blocked access to this section of waterfront, especially as I'm sure this is a public right of way down to the old concrete bridge. You will have to make do with pictures of other things.
I find the attitude of fishing societies, rather than the anglers themselves, really tiresome. This is yet another waterfront stretch to which public access has been lost in the name of the sport. I can see that folk are wanting to protect their investments, such as they are, and there is a lot of paranoia about poaching by Eastern Europeans although my Polish friends wet themselves laughing when they saw the signs that went up warning them not to eat swans. But I'm not a fan, they seem to sterilise the banks in the name of access, and sections of old paths like the Nottinghamshire Byway have been blocked.
Newark Argonauts used to share the lakes at South Muskham with anglers, and their colourful sails used to be a lovely sight at weekends, as well as their sweeping, veranda'd clubhouse. Then the fishermen decided they wanted them out, flattened the clubhouse, divided the lake up into smaller waters, and now the place looks like a bland hole full of water. Hardly ever seems to be anyone fishing on it either.
London Road Pond has got more and more areas of the lakeside protected by padlocked gates now, which really irritates me. There's no reason anglers and the public can't co-exist, the Blue Lake doesn't block access and manages to be a nice wildlife habitat too.
You can have fishing rights, but why do you need to block public access?