Middleton Park Pond - Leeds
Middleton Park, Town Street, Middleton, Leeds, LS10 3SH, 0113 3781142.
This lake is free to fish. (Information last updated May 2014)
Middleton Park Pond is situated in Middleton, a suburb of Leeds. This FREE TO FISH pond sits in a public park with access to toilets and car parking close by. The pond is managed by Leeds City Council who in recent years with the help of the Heritage Lottery Funded Parks Project have undertaken work to maintain the pond, add plants and improve some of the banking. The lake is stocked predominantly with the usual mixture coarse fish, slighly on the smaller side, however good size tench have been reported coming out. No new stock has been added to the pond. Keep an eye out for projects to get families fishing at this lake where people can try fishing with assistance from Get Hooked On Fishing and also the Angling Trust
Earnies reviews of Middleton Park Pond;Middleton Park Pond
Middleton Park Pond seems to have a pretty poor reputation amongst local anglers and having tried it this weekend I can see what the negativity is about. I didn't particularly want to fish Middleton Park Pond and got some very definite no's when asking friends if they wanted to accompany me to the lake for a session, but felt as it's a local FREE lake, I should pay it a visit on behalf of the blog, if only to confirm to others if the poor reviews on some of the Yorkshire forums were true. This isn't going to read like my other blogs do. I intend getting straight to the point, because it wasn't a great fishing session.
The pond is encircled by a path that runs very closely to the banking with benches very close by. As an angler I don't feel comfortable with unknown people walking closely behind my back, having to watch out to ensure people don't steal, and that dogs don't come and pee against my tackle box. Neither happened, but I don't go fishing to feel on my guard at all times. I'm there to relax and at this venue I didn't feel that I could. The path being near, people will try talk to you quite often, and although I'm happy to speak to other anglers and people looking to get into fishing to share tips and knowledge, I'm not there to converse with every man, woman and child that visits the park that day. With the benches, I don't fancy an audience whilst I fish. I know people are being polite when trying to chat to you, but some of them were pretty undesirable and I'd rather avoid the interaction.
A lot of the banking is concrete making it difficult to get bank sticks into the ground, although there are certain swims on the bank away from the car park where you could get set up. Most of the anglers were sat on the concrete or standing whilst holding a single rod. There's nothing wrong with this but it's not really how I fish so my technique is probably wrong for this lake. I wanted to use bite alarms with a really light set up going for tench and other fish 3lb and upwards. I sat down in a swim near to the kids play area. Smell of dog poo in the air, litter and Fosters beer cans scattered along the bank and in the margins. I looked down into the water to see builders rubble and one of those rubber blocks that hold temporary fencing in place. It's not great for creatures in and around the pond and it doesn't look particularly pleasant for those who want to enjoy what in reality is quite a picturesque although small park.
Midway through my short session a local angler turned up and shortly afterwards his mate joined him. Conversation at my usual venues tends to be quieter in volume, and the subject matter often a little more pleasant. I don't really care and don't have an opinion on why someone gets benefits in the first place or why they feel entitled to live on benefits all their lives. That part is none of my business. When they feel hard done by having to pay CSA £15 a week for the child they cannot be bothered seeing because they spent all last Saturday blowing their benefit money down the pub, and who don't see an issue with buying £100 t-shirts whilst their kids aren't provided for, it does tend to bug you a little. There were a couple of others on the lake who seemed like nice people, dressed smart and good bank side etiquette, but these two chaps, plus the litter, smell and dog that dived into the lake next to me set the tone. I lasted less than three hours before I'd decided I'd seen enough. I packed up and went, never to return if I'm honest. I can't see myself ever fishing here again.
You can look at this lake whilst stereotyping the area and give it a negative review, or you can try be objective as I'm hoping to be below; br> Middleton Park Pond in my eyes is a pond in a park that people should be able to go walk around with their kids, feed the ducks, sit on the benches and enjoy the view. I think the water belongs to this group of people and not particularly aimed at anglers. It disappoints me that people allow dogs to foul the area when young kids are playing. I think it's wrong that people dump litter and clearly sit by the lake getting drunk on an afternoon. It's antisocial and probably intimidating to others. Probably illegal too. I think if anglers want to use this water they have to accept that they'll be taking the rough with the smooth and should work around these issues. After all, you get what you pay for. I pay more for my pints of beer so I can go places where trouble causers and people who cannot behave won't pay to enter. I generally do the same with my fishing lakes.
So, in a nutshell, for those that have funds and transport to fish a wider area of Leeds, Middleton Park Pond is probably one to avoid. Pay the extra and try a privately owned commercial lake...
- Middleton Park Pond