River Avon, Barford, Warks
Barbel to 14lb are taken regularly from the spots below the weir all-year-round on feeder and pellet tactics. The Dead Arm is a good place to try as is the bottom end of the stretch below Sherbourne Brook.
Contact: Barford AA, 01564 777411
Prices: £45 a season, Barford AA
River Derwent, Borrowash, Derbys
Recent years have seen numerous big barbel to 17lb landed on this Earl of Harrington AC stretch on the outskirts of Derby. Big baits fished on a running line or static leger methods are all you need to catch one.
Prices: £5 from Nathan’s of Derby
Contact: 01332 515353
River Nene, Castor, Cambridgeshire
This area of river is becoming more popular amongst barbel anglers with fish to 15lb being reported. When the river is fining down during a warmer spell is the best time to go, using a roving approach with meat as bait.
Prices: £5 on the bank, Peterborough DAA (no night fishing)
River Severn, Hampton Loade, Shrops
Hampton Loade has 50 pegs of prime Barbel water situated 6 miles downstream of Bridgnorth on the left bank. The deeper pegs at the bottom end of the stretch are winter hotspots, fishing under your feet when the river is up and coloured.
Contact: Middle Severn Angling 01746 769070
Prices: £5 a day on the bank, Kinver Freeliners AC
River Trent, Holme, Notts
The spots by the outfall opposite the willows are hotspots for big barbel to over 10lb as is the weir further down. Try fishing a feeder crammed with groundbait and casters or maggots.
Contact: Worksop DAA, 01909 486350
Prices: £5 a day on the bank, Worksop DAA
River Wensum, Costessey Mill, Norfolk
Numerous re-stockings have taken place over the years on the Wensum and although the fishing isn’t as prolific as it once was, there are still barbel to be had in the weir pools around Costessey.
Prices: Free fishing
Contact: 08432 891368
Website: PW Angling, www.pwangling.co.uk
River Wye, Canons Bridge, Herefordshire
This Wye & Usk Foundation stretch either side of the bridge boasts deep glides, sweeping bends and fast, gravel lined rapids. If you don’t hook a big barbel here you’ll probably connect with one of the resident giant chub.
Contact: 01874 712 074, Wye & Usk Foundation
Prices: £15-£22 a day, four anglers on this stretch max per day
River Wye, Hereford, Herefordshire
The spots by the tennis courts below the bridge are good for specimen barbel as are by the flats at Bartonham, fishing from downstream of the oak tree. The first peg upstream of the old railway bridge is also a hotspot. A block-end feeder with bunches of maggots works well here.
Contact: Woody’s Tackle, 01432 344644
Prices: £7 from Woody’s Tackle, Hereford DAA