Expert anglers already searching for the next potential record carp

I know where there’s a carp already big enough to take the British record - and it’s being fished for now. These are the words of a high-profile carper this week following the death of the famous record-holding fish, ‘Two Tone’.

The big-name angler wouldn’t give away the location of the venue, but was adamant that at the right time of year, the ‘secret’ water - thought to be in Essex - contains a specimen more than capable of toppling the current record weight of 67lb 14oz.

The disclosure about this claimed ‘record in waiting’ will serve to add further fuel to the speculation about where the next ‘big one’ will come from, a subject that has been hotly debated since Two Tone, the male mirror carp that has dominated the top spot of UK carp angling for almost a decade, was found dead at its Conningbrook Lake home in Kent just over a week ago.

Although there are many well-known 50lb-plus fish across Britain, there is no clear successor to the Conningbrook specimen, a situation that appears to have created a ‘record race’, with fisheries and anglers trying to work out where the next carp capable of taking the crown will come from.

Rob Hales, owner of RH Fisheries, with such waters as The Monument and Acton, said: “There are plenty of fifties around, but it takes real ruthlessness for a UK fishery to produce a carp in the upper sixties. You need an extremely low stocking density with only high-quality feed, and the fish have to be of the best strain. The record will fall to a fish that comes from a fishery that’s managed in that way.” Also talking on the subject was highly-respected carp angler Rich Wilby, of Nash Tackle.

“It’s sad that Two Tone’s dead, but it’s also a very exciting time for big carp,” said Rich.

“There have been several 50lb fish caught recently and there are also quite a few young 40-pounders coming through. In the next five to 10 years these could well be contenders for the record, especially male fish that have been put in the right environment.”