Northern bream haul topped by 18lb specimen

It’s one of the most impressive catches of bream ever, four fish for 61lb including an 18lb 9oz
monster, and what’s more it came from a ‘rock hard’ Lancashire Stillwater.

Specimen hunter Steve Sutton was shocked to bank others of 16lb 6oz, 14lb and 12lb 1oz during a memorable overnight session on the water, which has a history of odd double figure bream but nothing in the league of an 18lb fish.

His lump is the latest in a string of over-sized bream to be reported this spring, including a new British record 23lb fish landed in April from Cambridgeshire’s Ferry Lagoon for Scot Crook, who also took one at 18lb 8oz.

Wigan-based Steve set up to fish two rods over the same spot, one being a Method feeder and the other a standard cage feeder with a long hooklength, but it was the Method which accounted for all four bream.  The 32-year-old earmarked a clear spot 100 yards out in 14ft of water, which he set about baiting with a bombardment 50 balls of groundbait via a catapult and a marker float as his target.

“This venue has a few big bream in and a few doubles do get caught, I’ve heard rumours of a 16lb fish before. I’ve been experimenting with putting various amounts of bait in recently but this time I decided to put more in and fish further out. I got there at 6pm but the action didn’t kick off until 12am when I had a screamer and the 14lb fish. Half an hour later I was in again and when I brought the fish out of the water I was shocked at the size of it, it got even better as I weighed it, it was like winning the lottery!

“The fish were like clockwork as another half an hour later I had the 12lb fish, then an hour passed before the 16lb 6oz bream came along. I’d have been happy with any one of these fish as they all beat my previous biggest which was 10lb. It didn’t sink in for two days!” he said.
Steve fished a semi-fixed Method Feeder with 8lb mainline and a 3is hook link of 6lb line. He left his hookbait, consisting of five red maggots on a size 14 Super Specialist hook, out of the feeder, and used a 50:50 mix of red crumb and a red Gold Pro bream groundbait.