Double-figure tench are once again being caught from Horseshoe Lake after apparently disappearing from the famous venue nearly a decade ago.  

The Carp Society’s 62-acre water, which resides on the Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire border, has long been a popular destination for anglers pursuing monster tincas and even showcased on TV programmes such as the Great Rod Race and Record Breaking Fish with Matt Hayes and Mick Brown.

Since the show’s airing, however, the once prolific tench water suffered a steady decline of specimen fish being caught, leaving the local tench enthusiasts and on-site bailiffs completely baffled.  


The huge tench that Horseshoe were famed for were feared dead until the last few seasons where double-figure specimens have once again made an appearance. 

Horseshoe Lake manager Miles Carter told Angling Times: “The tench have come back with a vengeance over the last few years and this year The Tenchfishers club has had a fantastic season, reporting specimens of up to 12lb. I was worried that the tench had gone, but these are obviously not new fish being caught, they are the same older residents that for some reason are coming out again in numbers.”

This isn’t the first case of tench disappearing for anglers with the phnomenon also being noticed on other venues across the country.

Fish Scientist and Angling Times columnist Dr Paul Garner was happy to provide a possible explanation for this so called ‘disappearing act’.

He said: “I’ve seen and heard of this happening before. 

“I think the fish are just so preoccupied on natural food, to the extent that they become very difficult to catch for two main reasons. Firstly, they ignore most baits. Certainly, anything bigger than a caster is likely to not get picked up. 

“Secondly, they move around very little when feeding, basically just sucking in mouthfuls of food, sorting it, then spitting out what they don’t want on the spot. 

“This makes most rigs highly inefficient. 

“There are probably other factors playing a part, but it all proves the point that you cannot write off a tench water just because it has a bad year or two – the same goes for big bream waters as well.”

Tenchfishers member Paul Hawkins with a recent 11lb fish from Horseshoe.

Tenchfishers member Paul Hawkins with a recent 11lb fish from Horseshoe.



Location: Horseshoe Lake, Burford Road, Lechlade, GL7 3QQ

Contact: 01367 253959

Prices: To fish Horseshoe you must be a member of The Carp Society which costs: 

£25 per year for adults and £10 per year for juniors

Fishing on the lake then costs £1 per hour for two rods

Rules: No leadcore, no leaders, barbless hooks only, no nuts, no braided mainlines


Facilities: Toilets, showers, tackle shop, catering facilities