Fishing for compliments

PUBLISHED: 06:06 26 May 2014

Cobbleacre Park, Hevingham.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Cobbleacre Park, Hevingham. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2014

Twenty-seven years ago Trevor Seales, a builder who also farmed land at Hevingham near Aylsham, decided to dig a pond to drain a waterlogged cow pasture. Little did he realise then that he was starting a businsess that would do on to span three generations and which would become nationally known across the fishing community,

Trevor explains: “The cattle were up to their knees in mud, so I got planning permission to dig the pond to solve the problem,” Further lakes followed and the Seales family, who live in and around Hevingham, decided to stock the waters with fish.

Trevor’s son, Andrew, takes up the story: “Word started to get around that there was good fishing here and the fishing business began to develop from there.”

Today, Cobbleacre Park is a magnet to fishermen from all over the UK, with five well-stocked and managed lakes to suit all levels of skill. Baliff there is Bob Anderson, a nationally recognised and award-winning fisherman, who comments: “The way these lakes have been built means they are not just holes in the ground - there are some really good condition fish in there. We have people come to fish here from all over the country, even from as far afield as New Zealand, and if they catch fish then they will be back.”

The park – which has a David Bellamy Gold Conservation Award – has static caravans for rental or sale, and is set in 40 acres of natural parkland some 12 miles from Norwich, and close to Aylsham and Cromer. On site are more than 150 bird boxes and a wildflower meadow – so much space to wander and relax in the tranquil setting.

A new development at the park is the introduction of a glamping meadow where two bell tents are set in a peaceful orchard area, with views over a small lake. Each sleeps up to a family of six, and outside is a fire pit that doubles as a barbeque. Facilities on site, which are open to campers and tourers, include toilet and shower block and a small shop selling fishing accessories and snacks.

Adam, Trevor’s grandson, is now managing the site. He is enthusiastic about the glamping offering that Cobbleacres now includes and was instrumental in the design and furnishing of the tent set-ups, which have sizal carpets on a wooden base, double beds, futons and handpicked, vintage styled furnishings.

“We see this as a good way to continue to diversify in what we are offering here but still to remain very true to the fishing and nature, which is what Cobbleacre is about,” says Adam.

Expect to pay

Fishing is £8 a day (£5 concessions)

Glamping tents, high season £155 for three nights (weekend); £175 four nights (midweek); £290 (week)

Camping, £10 non-electric; £12.50 five amp hook-up; £15 16 amp hook-up

Hope to catch

The five lakes at Cobbleacre Park are stocked with carp, catfish, rudd, roach, perch and bream, with the specimen lake containing catfish over 60lb and carp over 37lb.

Get in touch

Cobbleacre Park Lakes

Brick Kiln Road, Hevingham, NR10 5NL; 01603 754305; www.cobbleacrelakes.co.uk

Fishing inquiries to baliff Bob Anderson on 07879816181.

Go fish

Norfolk has a great catch of fishing venues, with dozens of lakes and pits, parks, ponds and day fishing sites. And that’s without even considering our rivers, Broads and, of course, the sea!

The Norfolk Broads – both from bankside and boat – are very popular with anglers, offering some great opportunities to get away from it all in the most serene of countryside settings, and to try for bream, roach, eels, pike and more.

Sea fishing is available from charter boats off the north Norfolk coast, with possibilities of catching treats like mackerel, bass and tope.

Fish from the beaches too along the coast from Cromer to Great Yarmouth for cod, mackerel and whiting.

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