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A New Trout Fishing Destination

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Jonathan Tomlinson with a pristine 8lb fish caught from Haywards Farm Lake Jonathan Tomlinson with a pristine 8lb fish caught from Haywards Farm Lake

OK, it’s not quite ‘new’ but Haywards Farm Lake is under new management and already producing the goods!






Set amidst 45 acres of delightful Berkshire countryside the Sportfish Game Fishing Centre is a centre of excellence for game fishing, offering an unrivalled package of fishing, tuition and expertise, together with one of the most comprehensive displays of game fishing tackle and accessories in the on-site retail store - and it has now got even better!

Haywards Farm Lake
The on-site Haywards Farm Lake first opened in March 2000 and management transferred to the Sportfish team in May 2016, whereupon they took on the ambitious brief to create one of the finest small, stillwater trout fisheries in the country.

The canvas for the creation is the 11-acre Haywards Farm Lake, a spring-fed, crystal clear water boasting abundant wildlife and insect life and featuring landscaping that affords both excellent access and unimpeded casting. Not by any means a featureless ‘bowl’ Haywards Farm Lake has character in the form of bays, reed-fringed margins and promontories and the depths vary from 3 to 15ft offering a range of fishing opportunities.

Fish stock
The new, regular stocking regime is a mix of high quality, hard-fighting, full-finned rainbows with a high proportion of superb brown trout, together with a few blue trout to add a little extra interest. The fish currently average over 3lb in weight but there are plenty in the 5 to 8lb bracket with the occasional specimen that will really test your tackle.

Facilities and projects
There is ample free parking and the on-site lodge offers a lounge with a small kitchen area, hot drinks facilities and both male and female toilets.

Ongoing projects include:
•    Increasing the number of casting platforms around the lake
•    Making boat fishing available for the first time (from June 2016)
•    Introducing more specimen fish
•    Installing floating islands and aeration
•    Refurbishing the lodge and picnic areas
•    Creating a new fishery on another lake on-site for carp on the fly and lure fishing


Haywards Farm Lake
Fishing is from 9am – dusk, seven days a week.
No advance booking is required for fishing, all tickets may be purchased on site, but due to popularity advance booking of boats is recommended by telephone to the fishery office on: 0118 930 3860

Full day ticket (4 fish):        £50:00

Half day ticket (3 fish):        £40:00
9am to 14:00
14:00 to dusk

Half day ticket (2 fish):        £30:00
9am to 14:00
14:00 to dusk

Catch and release:               £25:00   

Boat Hire
Boat ticket (Full day):        £15:00
Boat ticket (Half day):        £10:00
Extra boat passenger:        £  5:00

Parents and children
Parents / guardians may share their ticket limit with up to two children under 16.

Tackle hire
A set of fly fishing tackle, suited for use on Haywards Farm Lake, may be hired from the shop at a rate of £5.00 per day.


Haywards Farm Lake

1.    All tickets must be purchased before fishing.
2.    Tickets are non-transferable.
3.    All anglers mush possess a valid EA rod licence.
4.    Fly fishing only.
5.    Up to two flies may be used at any one time.
6.    Minimum leader breaking strain 6lb.
7.    A maximum of one brown trout to be retained per bag limit.
8.    Anglers fishing catch and release must use a barbless (or crushed barb) hook and fish must not be removed from the water.
9.    All anglers must carry a landing net and priest.
10.  All anglers must complete and submit a catch return form, including nil returns, and post them in one of the boxes provided. A monthly draw of completed returns will be made, with the winner receiving a free day’s fishing.
11.  Knee boots only if wading.
12.  The tuition platforms are out of bounds at all times.

Boat Rules

1.    Lifejackets must be worn at all times.
2.    All boats must be moored to the fixed buoys, no drifting.
3.    Flies must be removed from the water if moving between mooring points.
4.    Please ensure that all litter and fishing tackle is removed when you return your boat at the end of your session.

The fishery lodge offers a small kitchen area, together with lounge and toilet facilities with picnic-style seating available on the adjacent lakeside area.

Fish weighing and bagging facilities are provided in the lodge but we regret we do not currently allow fish to be cleaned on site.

Refurbishment of the lodge and surrounds will be taking place soon and we hope improvements to facilities will include a barbecue area, a fish smoking facility and enhancement of seating and picnic areas.

The Sportfish Game Fishing Centre is just a few minutes from junction 12 of the M4 and a short walk from Theale railway station (Great Western Railway with regular service to Reading).  There is excellent access and ample free parking.

Address and Contact Details
Haywards Farm, Theale, Reading, Berkshire RG7 4AS
T: 0118 930 3860
E: sportfish-reading@sportfish.co.uk

For full details and map click HERE

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