I have been considering my options these last few days with much pondering and thanks to the amount of very good quality and interesting fishing blogs that people take the time and passion to write, such as the one written by Jeff Hatt, I have been considering doing a spot of roving on a very small stream. Having taken the time to look at it during the summer when the water was very low, I can't say I saw that many fish, the odd Chub of two or three pound, some small Roach and Perch, admittedly it was fairly choked with weed as well, but there was some interesting deeper areas and some lovely gravel runs, the last few days has seen us have a nice drop of rain, perfect for giving many of our rivers down south a good flushing, although that term is a dubious one, as I will lead on to explain.
I had passed the stream by for many years, whilst on the way to fishing the local pits, I am guilty for having neglected it. I remember chatting to a chap on a damp, November afternoon, he was roving about and was very forthcoming about the fish that the stream contained, Chub, Perch, Trout, Gudgeon, Roach, Dace and the odd Barbel. I should have followed my instincts back then and spent time fishing it, alas I was more into stillwater fishing and the thoughts of this little stream, were left to gather dust at the back of my mind.
Flick ahead to the here and now and I found out that during July 2010, Thames Water which operates Silchester Sewage Treatment Works in Hampshire, had two storage tanks used to store sewage sludge, which failed. Two redundant storm tanks were used to store sewage sludge and these were isolated from the sewage treatment process to prevent stored sewage sludge being pumped back into the works. However, on the morning of 20th July 2010, the two storm tanks were full and needed to be emptied and released a "flushing" of sewage into the stream. The enviroment agency estimated 7500 to 22000 fish were killed, Thames Water pleaded guilty and were fined a paltry £61,049.
This would explain why during this summer I only spotted a few fish, what's left is anyones guess. That being the case, I have decided to spend my next couple of fishing trips doing some roving on this tiny waterway to see what remains, hopefully there is still some life left in what was once a very special ecosystem.