Cherry Lake

Cherry Lakes is a 5 acre gravel pit and the biggest lake on the complex. It holds over 300 specimen Carp, most of which are over 20lb and up to just over 50lb.

Cherry Lake contains around 300+ Mirror, Common, Leather and Ghost (Mirror and Common) Carp of a variety of strains. The vast majority of these Carp are over 15lb with well over 200 Carp being 20lb+. The lake contains comfortably over 80 different 30lb+ Carp with around 10 over 40lb+. The lake record is currently held by a 50-02 Mirror Carp (pictured above) which was caught in September 2022. The biggest Common caught to date weighed 46-12.

During 2022 we had 71 different Mirror and Common Carp caught and photographed properly over 30lb from Cherry Lake. This includes six Ghost Common and Mirror Carp over 30lb, which are magnificent fish. We also had 8 different Carp over 40lb+. Since 2014 over 300+ different anglers have caught a 30lb+ Carp from Cherry Lake and joined the Cherry lakes 30+ club. For many this was their Personal Best. Each new member of the 30+ club receives a complimentary polo shirts (and hoodies for the over 35lb)+ and these have become much sought after and prized possessions!

Cherry Lake is a lake designed for experienced anglers who are used to blanking, and know how to, and are capable of handling, big Carp safely. If you are inexperienced or want to regularly experience action then you should choose one of our other lakes. If you cannot comfortably and safely lift a 30lb Carp out of the water in a sling, then please do no book onto this lake.

Please do not book a holiday at Cherry Lakes until you have read all about the lake and the rules.

Please review the video below on safe carp handling. We expect all anglers on Cherry Lakes to follow the best practices outlined here. If you are unable or unwilling to do so, please do not book.

All anglers are required to have the correct tackle and rigs to fish on Cherry Lake.

Please scroll through the updates within the Latest News and Photo Gallery sections of this website to see some photos and reports of some great Carp. With it's many features, Cherry Lake is the experienced Carp anglers dream and a delight to fish. Keep reading to find out more.

Cherry Lake was drained and restored by us in 2012 and significantly improved. It has been designed by Carp anglers for experienced Carp anglers and is the thinking Carp anglers dream. Cherry Lake represents a good challenge for the experienced Carp angler and cannot be described as easy or prolific. Even good anglers can blank on Cherry Lake.

Cherry Lake is not a runs water and is generally not suitable for the inexperienced or novice Carp angler. Please do not book Cherry Lake if you are inexperienced or want a lot of action as you will be disappointed. If in doubt please ask. Undoubtedly you will probably enjoy your stay on more one of the smaller more heavily stocked exclusive lakes. We do not allow anglers under 16 on Cherry Lake without the express prior permission of the owner which must be sought at the time of booking.

All the Lodge and Cottage swims contain plenty of features ranging from tree lined bank side ledges and shallows, to deep channels and holes, to plateaus and bars. Click here to find out about the lake restoration project.

Sunset on Cherry Lake
Sunset on Cherry Lake

The Cherry Lake Carp are growing, having responded well to the on-going feeding programme undertaken over the last ten years. We feed them on the Pellets, Hempseed and Cherry Lake Boilies that we also sell. We normally feed the Carp in Cherry Lake, Cherry Springs and Cherry Mere two to three times a week during the warmer months when the water temperature is above 10 degrees Centigrade. See bait deal section

Typically 2-4 runs per session during the spring to autumn period is a realistic expectation for a competent experienced angler. Often the difference between a memorable trip and just a good break is the ability of the angler to convert their chances.

You can night fish from each of our lakeside Lodges enabling you to fish 24/7, as you are never more than a few feet from your rods. You will however need alarms with remote sounders. For information about the Cherry Lake Lodges click here Heron, Osprey, & Grebe Lodges

Tom Nixon-Taylor with his new Pb, 'The Patch' at 42-12
Tom Nixon-Taylor with 'The Patch' at 42-12

We feel that having a target stock level of around 300 large Carp should be about the right level in Cherry Lake and we will manage the stock levels to this range over the coming years. With this number of Carp the fish have sufficient space and food to stay healthy and keep growing, as well as having sufficient Carp in the lake to ensure it is does not become too difficult to fish. The Carp fishing experience at Cherry Lakes, and in particular on Cherry Lake is all about quality rather than quantity.

We do introduce 10-15 hand-picked younger Carp from our stock pond each year into Cherry Lake each year. This ensures that we constantly have younger crap coming through as replacing those fish which have died through the year.

Each swim on Cherry Lake has an abundance of different features which you can clearly see on the illustration of Cherry Lake below.

Each Lodge and the Cottage has at least one acre of water available exclusively for it’s anglers to fish in. As a result the fishing pressure is relatively low for a holiday venue. The only position you can fish from is your Lodge/Cottage. We do not allow bank fishing or sell day tickets. The only people allowed to fish are our Lodge and Cottage guests.

The Cottage and the three Lodges, which are known as Heron, Osprey and Grebe, all offer a differing range of features. In fact the challenge for the angler will be to decide where to concentrate on. Within each Lodge and the Cottage there is an ‘anglers pack’, which along with the fishery rules has a series of photographs of the lake bottom and it’s features and a map of each swim. These photos and maps should helpfully give you some ideas as to where to fish. Pleasant to look at, each Lodge is not over-looked and feel very private.

Each Lodge can accommodate up to two anglers fishing up to two rods each. A maximum of 4 Rods can be used when two anglers are sharing a Cherry Lake Lodge or Cottage swim. This rule increases the chances of two anglers getting a run as well as reduce the chance of fish loss or damage by being caught in the other lines. A single angler can continue to use up to 3 Rods. There is plenty of room on the fishing platform, but you will need your rod-pods. These rod pods must be free-standing and not the screw in type. Bank sticks located to the side of the fishing platforms are not allowed.

Gary Owen's second Ghost carp over 30lb. A 37-08 beauty!
Gary Owen with a Ghost Carp of 37-08

Similar to most other sensibly stocked waters across the Cotswold Water Park, weed wants to grow in Cherry Lake. We work hard to try to maintain the balance between having a sensible amount of weed (which is good for the Carp and the overall water quality) and stopping it from getting out of control. We believe we have got the balance about right and that the weed does not normally cause a problem for most anglers.

’Onion or blanket Weed’ is one of the varieties that grows in the Lake but which does not normally cause a problem when presenting your rigs. Some weed will become attached to your rig on the retrieve and it is nothing to worry about. There are several weed beds which are good holding areas for the Carp and are good features to fish to and in. This weed is rich in natural life and the Carp constantly feed in it. Providing your rods are able to control the Carp and you are able to ‘drop’ your leads quickly in the fight, this weed should not cause too many problems. If you hate weed, then you should fish one of the other three lakes (Cherry Pool, Cherry Springs and Cherry Mere) which are all weed free due to their higher stocking density.

The bottom is largely gravel and sand as you would expect of an old gravel pit. There are also areas of silt (shallows and in the channels where the silt naturally collects).

If you intend fishing the far bank then rods with a test curve of around 3lb+ along with big pit style reels to gather up line quickly are definitely recommended.

Paul Mitchell with the stunning Mirror known as 'The Pretty One' at 39-12
Paul Mitchell with 'The Pretty One' at 39-12 from The Cottage Swim

Throughout the year the Carp in Cherry Lakes are fed on a combination of good nutritionally balanced Cherry Lakes boilies (which are sourced directly from a leading bait company), high quality 8-20 mm Carp pellets and Hempseed. We do NOT allow particles from outside to be used at Cherry Lakes other than those supplied by ourselves. This is to guarantee that they have all been prepared correctly and there is no risk to the health of the Carp. We also do not allow shelf life boilies to be used as feed (crushed, cut down or whole). The Lodges and Cottage all have freezers for your freezer boilies. Bait and Bait Deals

Like all Carp, those in Cherry Lakes will respond to good baits which are well presented. If you have confidence in your own favourite bait, please don’t hesitate to bring it. If however you are not so sure, you can be confident that the Carp are used to the Cherry Lake boilies and pellets and that these are an established food source for the fish. These baits are competitively priced. Bait and Bait Deals

Baitboats are allowed on Cherry Lake and around the rest of the Cherry Lakes complex.. Indeed we encourage their use to allow anglers to make full use of their exclusive water, such as by fishing the far margins up to 120m away or by fishing close to the tree line or reeds. Baitboats with a depth finder are particularly helpful due to the extensive features in Cherry Lake. If you have not got your own, you can hire one from us. Please see here for details about our Baitboats

Steve Townsend 39
Steve Townsend with a January caught Mirror of 39-02

Fish care and safety is paramount across Cherry Lakes. An approach welcomed by all good anglers who want to catch high quality good conditioned Carp. All anglers are expected to follow any advice or requests from the fishery management concerning fish safety.

All Lodges and the Cottage are provided with Carp Cradles, a 42″ Landing Net and a Weigh Sling, so no need to fill up the car with these, and avoid the wet fishy smells on the way back from your holiday! A weighing staff is also provided. All Carp caught must be photographed over the Carp Cradle and returned to the water in the weigh sling/retainer.

Both Mike the owner, and Dave the fishery manager, have over 60 years of Carp fishing experience and will be around around to offer any help and advice as required. Please don’t hesitate to ask them as talking about the Carp will make their day!

Cherry Lake also contains a large number of Perch and some Roach which are rarely fished for let alone caught. Perch up to 4lb+ have been found. Owner Mike recently caught Perch of 2-10 and 2-06 in a few hours in April.

Mike & Perch
There are also some cracking Perch in Cherry Lake.

We have done everything we can to ensure Cherry Lake is both very private and secure. We want you to feel safe and enjoy your holiday. There is only one access point to Cherry Lake which is through the main 6 foot high electric gates. These gates benefit from security lighting and CCTV. The rest of the property is fully fenced, mostly with 6 foot high fencing which is topped off by barbed wire. There are numerous security lights around the property including on each of the Lodges. Given all we have done above we believe Cherry Lakes should be amongst the safest lakes to fish.

Cherry Lake Map
Cherry Lake, topography
Cherry Lakes is the perfect short break and holiday fishing venue. Click below to contact us and book your holiday.
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