After months of speculation, Angling Times can finally reveal the new owner of Makins, Britain’s biggest commercial fishery.
Sheffield-based club angler Alan McDiarmid (59) has bought the massive 18-lake, 500-peg complex in what he describes as ‘the fulfilment of a lifelong dream’.
Alan signed on the dotted line to seal the purchase in August after British Waterways put the fishery up for sale with a hefty price tag of around £1 million.
But the deal has remained secret ever since, leading to rumours as to who the new owner might be. Some anglers believed that venue creator Billy Makin himself had bought the fishery back after being spotted walking the banks.
But this week, with new plans on the horizon for the site often described as a ‘Sheffielder’s second home’, Alan, who runs a successful motor trade business in his home city, believes it’s time to go public.
He said: “It’s every angler’s dream to buy a fishery, but not many of them get the chance to buy one so big and famous as Makin’s.
“I’ve wanted my own fishery since I was 15 and I’ve missed out on buying three or four in recent years, so this is a dream come true.”
As a keen club angler, Alan has fished Makin’s a handful of times in the past and knows of its reputation, both good and bad. He has bold plans to make it the best fishery in the country once again through his own hard work.
“Makin’s isn’t broken, it just needs some TLC. We need the basics to start with – running water, electricity and a telephone – plus to tidy the site up and make it more accessible.
“We also want to freshen the lakes up a bit, and in the short term that might mean using the stock fish we already have. It may be that we move fish from some of the lesser-used lakes to boost others,” he said.
Longer term, the hands-on boss plans to add a bait shop on site, and is also looking to move from his native Sheffield to live on or near the fishery.
● For more info on Makin’s call 01455 220877.