Frensham Great Pond
OS Map Reference: SU 844 405
Postcode: GU10 2QD
Water Type: Ancient Estate Lake
Designation: Carp & Specimen Water
Size: 60 acres
Maximum Depth: 5 feet
Head Bailiff: Mr. M. Slater
Deputy Bailiff: Ian Lamb
Local Police: 101
Mainly Tench from 3-6lb and up to 10lb
Some Leney Carp to over 20lb
Roach and Rudd to 3lb+
Pike and Perch
For many anglers the traditional quarry of early summer remains the tench, and this lovely sixty acre lake has them in abundance. Later in the season specimen roach are a strong possibility, and as winter sets in, Frensham lives up to its reputation as a top-class pike water.
Large shallow lake mainly containing stocks of Tench, Roach, Rudd and Perch. Large bags of Tench can be expected in early season with specimens in excess of 7lb are a possibility. Numbers of Roach and Rudd may be caught with the odd specimen over 2lb present. Perch have made a welcome comeback and a small number of specimens over 3lb have been reported.
Please use a wire trace if you are lure fishing for them as you are likely to encounter Pike as well, see Bye-law 4.s. pages 10/11. Pike fishing can be rewarding at times, with the odd fish touching 20lb occasionally being caught.
Other species are also present, e.g. Carp. The specialist angler may find an interesting challenge.
Members should note that this water is very popular with the general public and that we also share it with the Yacht Club. Early morning, evening and midweek sessions are advised, particularly in the summer. Members are advised to avoid the beach and swimming areas on Summer weekends and Bank Holidays.
This fantastic fishery is a frequent early season target for the Tench and responds well to the usual feeder tactics, although frequent casting to get a bed of bait out is needed to hold the shoals.
The Carp have been putting weight on over the past few years and need specialist tactics for a result, but are well worth the challenge.
Lure fishing for Pike can give interesting results for the active winter angler, but dead baits are recommended for the larger specimens.
October 2011 to 14th March 2012: Mike Slater, Head Bailiff
The lake received a higher amount of attention this autumn & winter. Carp anglers, not unlike the summer, have found sport inconsistent. The latter part of the season found catches becoming easier to come by, but having received more attention this year the Carp returns have been generally low with fish averaging around 18lb and a larger Mirror going to 27lb. The winters piking has also been inconsistent, the fish that were caught averaged around 10 lb, with a small number of fish between 16lb-18lb being reported. The bridle bank seemed to give better results than anywhere else. A small number of lure anglers found that even in the coldest conditions sport was more consistent than any other method. Perch again have largely been ignored, but those who have tried, have caught fish just under 3lbs. Legered Lobworm over sprayed Maggot being by far the best tactic. The Lakes Rudd have been fairly elusive even though anglers have targeted them throughout the winter. For those who do not know, a recent weed survey has shown that the weed that has been all to evident in recent years, has now disappeared. Contrary to rumours, this is not due to any suspicious circumstances, there have been regular water checks carried out and no chemicals etc. have been detected. On the subject of water checks, on 24th of March 2012 a pH reading was taken with a reading of 7.41, the lowest reading ever recorded at Frensham Great Pond. Usually readings have been around 8.5 at this time of year. With no weed present, algae blooms could be high as they have no competition for the nutrients and dissolved oxygen available within the pond, but with such a low starting point the pH levels may not reach the levels where the blue-green algae becomes a problem and reaches critically high levels that can cause problems. The pH of the pond will continue to be monitored until the end of the summer. Recently a meeting involving the Sailing Club took place, which went very well. In recent years relations have improved between both parties and at the meeting with new officials of the sailing club a greater level of mutual understanding has been reached. The small number of remaining issues have been discussed by both parties and will in the future hopefully be resolved. If however problems do arise, I ask that members remain patient and contact me immediately. Please refrain from using abusive behaviour towards the sailing club members, as this will not help the good relations that I have built, and which have improved the issues that were evident in previous years. Both parties have agreed to report any abusive behaviour to either the commodore or myself, and these will be dealt with severely.
Frensham Great Pond water report - 16th June – 29th August 2011 by Mike Slater, Head Bailiff
The season so far has started inconsistently. This is mainly due to the unexpected return of a blue/green algae outbreak, and although it isn't as bad as times gone by, it has still affected sport overall. The Tench fishing has been average and anglers are having to work harder for their catches. Anglers who are willing to scale down and float fish for the Tench are experiencing better sport as the fish this year haven't had their usual suicidal few weeks at the start of the season. This approach always gives better results as the summer progresses and this year is no different. Try and float fish as light as you can with maggot fed little and often, and expect very shy bites. The Tench that are being caught are in fantastic condition, not unlike the rest of the fish that are found at Frensham, and you can expect them to average 5lbs. The Rudd like the Tench fishing has also, on the whole, been average, with similar tactics giving more reliable sport along with fishing the feeder using small particle baits. Expect fish to average 1-1.5 lbs. The Carp have been elusive and unwilling to feed in a regular, consistent manner that has caused sport to be slow for most; there are anglers who are still waiting to bank their first Carp this year. Expect fish to average 18lbs. If you are planning to fish Frensham Great Pond, the best advice I can give is to try and find signs of the fish before you choose your selected swim/area. Every year I am amazed that many anglers are willing to just turn up and plonk themselves in an area that they think is best to fish, even before reaching the water?! With the outbreak of the algae this year, the fish are not feeding as well as they should and anglers who are putting a lot of bait in to draw the fish to them are at most times, only putting the fish off.
Frensham Great Pond water report - 16th June - 16th August 2010 by Mike Slater, Head Bailiff
The Tench fishing has been consistent but not outstanding this year. This was due to the Tench spawning on and off from mid June 'til mid July. With this we did not experience the normal big feed at the start of the season. Instead we have had a longer feeding period but with less explosive action. The usual tactics and baits have continued to score, being either traditional float or feeder fished alongside groundbait, particles and mini boilies. Location is simple for the Tench; find the weed, which isn't hard, and find the Tench. The Carp anglers have picked up far more Tench this year and along with the vast amount of natural food with in the waters weed, sport has been slow and inconsistent. The lakes Rudd have been out in numbers but in general the sizes are down so far. The usual float or a small feeder fished with the little and often bait approach will work. As usual with all fishing, location is key and I recommend looking for signs of fish before committing yourself to a certain swim. Members should be aware that the National Trust officials have been more pro-active with charging on the gates of the main car park this year. If you show them your current FAS membership handbook you will be allowed to enter free of charge. If this is not the case, please contact me immediately and it will be sorted. There have been a couple of officials who were not aware that we enter for free, but they have been made aware about this. Another important issue I would like to raise is that with the waters weed being in good health again, members are struggling to sink their lines. Due to this, a number of lines have been taken by the yachts. Please be mindful of this and do all that you can to get your lines as low as possible. I recommend either fishing with a true sinking braid or a heavy high breaking strain fluorocarbon main line fished as slack as possible with your rod tips sunk low into the water, or as long as you have minimal weed in front of you fish with back leads. May I remind members to take litter home. Although this is not normally an issue on this water. There has been a small number of new faces who possibly think it doesn't apply to them and if you are caught you will risk losing your membership, there will be no excuses accepted on this issue. Please also be mindful to look for anglers whom you suspect are not FAS members. If you feel anyone on the water should not be there, do not challenge them if you feel intimidated. Instead, contact me and it will be dealt with. One other issue worth remembering is that between the dates of Monday 23rd to Friday 27th the sailing club have their Junior Sailing days. This generally involves inexperienced young sailors being coached on the water. Expect boats to possibly come in closer than normal due to the lack of control of the junior sailors, if you experience problems remain polite and patient. If the issue continues, please contact me.
Alan Murphy had great mixed catches on the maggot feeder on 16th & 17th June 2010
16th June - Fishing from 4.30 until 7pm, he had 4 Tench to 7-3 along with 10 Rudd, including 5 x 2 pounders up to 2lb 8oz plus a nice Perch of 1lb 9oz.
17th June - Fished 4.30am until 12.30pm, he had 3 Tench to 6lb 1oz and 6 Rudd between 1lb 4oz and 2lb 2oz. That's 16 Rudd over the two sessions weighing in at 27lb 14oz. The Tench fishing was quite slow, possibly because most of the fish were still carrying spawn.
June 2009 to November 2009 – Mike Slater: Head Bailiff
Start of the season the lakes Tench had their normal pre and post spawn munch up. Winning Tactics were either traditional float or feeder tactics with groundbait, maggots, corn and mini boilies, or a straightforward boilie approach. Bags of up to 30 fish averaging 4-5 lb were reported in early season, tailing off as the season progressed
The lakes Rudd, although sometimes hard to track down, were obliging with fish averaging 1lb 8oz being caught through either feeder tactics as above or float fishing baits mid water. Again sport slowed as the season progressed, with some bags of fish including 11 Rudd between 2lb 8oz and 3lb 1oz in just an hour and some anglers have had several fish over the 3lb mark this season. The Perch have not been seriously targeted, but fish have shown, averaging 1lb 8oz 2 lbs, with legered or float fished lobworm being by far the best bait and method, some anglers have targeted the Perch with both lures and fish baits but with little success. The Perch will be prepared to feed through out the whole season, with sport being best in low light conditions, especially as the water is again crystal clear, Members must remember if lure or fish baits are used for Perch a wire trace must be used – Byelaw 4.s.ii l. The lakes Carp are being more and more pressured every year and due to this they have seen a lot of bait, this has made sport patchy. Even with the lakes shoals of Tench the weed is giving both the Carp and Tench a lot of natural food and in turn leaving an amount of uneaten bait causing slow sport and leaving some anglers to be still fishless so far this season. The fish that have been caught have averaged 18 lbs. The Pike have not shown in numbers yet this year and with the present weed being expected to again stay around all year, it's spreading the shoals of small fish which in turn is spreading the waters predators. Expect pike to average 7-8 lbs when caught with occasional double figure fish.
Farnham Angling Society Record
|Bullhead||00:00:12||0.021||February 2010||Steve Ansell|
- Members can fish all banks with the exception of the area from the front of the Hotel to the front of the Yacht Club and the private land/sanctuary in the south east corner (see map).
- Bye-law 4.z No boats with the exception of bait boats are permitted.
- Night fishing is allowed, but we must stress that junior members are not permitted to fish at night without an accompanying AND adjacent SENIOR MEMBER. (see bye-law 4.r page 10)
- Umbrellas and Stormsides may be used all season, bivouacs are permitted from 1st October until the end of the season.
- The platform indicated on the map may be fished, but it must be approached in chest waders due to the depth of water.
- No open fires - see Bye-law 4.o page 10 or BBQ's of any kind at this fishery.
- Nobody to be on the banks with fishing tackle before 12 o’clock midday on 15th June
- Anyone fishing too close to the buoys or floating island are putting fish at risk. As a guide, fishing beyond or within 30 metres is too close and is unacceptable. Fish safety and conservation must at all times come first.
Unfortunately, with 40 - 50 large Common Carp scales found near the inlet swim, it is suspected that a partial de-scaling has taken place, it is quite possibly one of the two large Common Carp, one of which was mid-30's and the other around the 28-30lb mark, known as the Long and Short Commons.
A similar sized Mirror Carp is known to swim with them. No body has been found, but not far away, a 'dead line' has since been found with a jelly lure attached.
Mike Slater, the Head Bailiff on Frensham Great Pond has instructed his bailiff team to increase the number of bailiffing rounds that are undertaken, checking for fixed lines through the use of a drag stick along the margins or casting parallel to the bank when anglers are not fishing to remove any fixed lines that are found and mentioning the problem to all FAS Members that are bailiffed so they can keep their eyes open, be vigilant and report any issues ASAP to Mike Slater in the first instance on 07967 - 736815.
Unfortunately, notices prohibiting poaching have been ripped down at the fishery many times and groups of non-FAS members have been found fishing illegally over the summer and were asked to leave, having been fishing with no permits, cheap rods and BBQ's at the ready in swims on the bank opposite the hotel.
Please ensure we do all we can to avoid any losses in the future - The Executive Committee (17th January 2012)
The FAS Perch record has been broken with a fish of 3lb 5oz landed on 22nd November by Duncan Charman from Frensham Great Pond whilst fishing with maggots and a helicopter rig. The fish was landed along with several Rudd and Tench whilst Duncan was once again targeting the specimen Rudd at Frensham.
Off Bacon Lane, Frensham, Surrey
View Larger Map
Approach from the A287 travelling south from Farnham.
There is an official car-park off the road which leads to the Frensham Pond Hotel.
This road is the first right turn past the school on the A287.
You may have to pay a fee in the summer and gates are locked at night.
There are other areas around the pond where cars may be parked but please take care not to cause obstruction.
Frensham Great Pond is a man made pond, having existed since at least 1206. Three streams fed the pond which was created by damming the Whitmore Stream at the west end of the Pond. The Bishop of Winchester stocked the pond with Carp, Bream & Pike and periodically drained it to trap the fish. There was a channel approximately 30' from the western bank of the pond and some 6-10' deep that was used to trap the fish within the sump,which was re-dug each time to enable its continued use. Some of the fish were transferred alive in barrels to local monasteries and kept in stew ponds from which fish were taken to provide Friday lunches for the monks and local population, others were sold and transported far and wide via horse and cart to markets.
By the 15th Century, in the area of the lake that now fronts the hotel, stew ponds and a mill had been built. Within the 17th Century, a sheep dip which was used to cleanse the sheep prior to them being sheared, was constructed below the stew ponds that supplied it with water.
Nautical aviation is marked by the fact that the very first seaplane was tested and developed on the pond in 1913 and during World War I thousands of British soldiers were billeted around the pond. In the 1920's Frensham Great Pond was part of the Pierrepont Estate, which included the Frensham Pond Hotel with a Mr G Pollard controlling the pond with the fishing being leased to Farnham Angling Society and boating starting in the 1930's.
By 1953 a Mrs Webster owned the hotel and was the leaseholder of the pond’s fishing, shooting and boating rights. The pond was eventually purchased under Compulsory Purchase in 1963 by Hambledon Rural District Council (HRDC) to stop it falling into private ownership. In the early 1970's Waverley Borough Council replaced HRDC and agreed to manage the lake and surrounding common with The National Trust, this agreement remains in place.