Haddon estate





Please use only barbless hooks.





For many seasons past we chose to spawn from our native strains of trout. We have been watching closely and monitoring their impact upon our rivers and streams. As a result of our findings we have been cutting down on the numbers of stock fish introduced to our rivers. Only the Bradford and Day Ticket Wye have been stocked regularly recently.

Solid research made us realise the harm we were doing when stocking at all. Our stock fish were driving out the perfectly suited wild trout and out-competing them in every event. Come the winter those stock fish would leave in search of a more comfortable habitat. To illustrate this, an experiment was carried out on the Lower Lathkill. No stock fish were added to a particular pool and riffle sequence. Any semi-resident stock fish were removed and counted. The river was treated to basic/medium level restoration efforts over a three year period. We then assessed the population; where once there were two stock fish there are now thirty wild trout. From this we concluded stocking was upsetting the ecological balance of the river and destroying its ability to create healthy, large populations of wild trout. River restoration improves the rivers ability to reverse the damage more rapidly.

Policy for the Future

The Haddon Estate hatcheries closed. This improved water quality to our rivers. An exciting project was undertaken which involved intelligent restorations and improvements on all sections of our main rivers and every feeder stream on the Estate by way of introductions of buffer strips and other husbandry works. Our aim was to work with the superb water quality available to us in Derbyshire and create large numbers of free rising wild trout and further benefit the river corridor for all native wildlife and particularly the fly life. The rivers continue to be transformed back to their wild natural state which the discerning fisherman will appreciate and enjoy. A catch and release policy was introduced to the Estate rivers in general and a request to use only barbless hooks. Catch and release will maintain and improve the average size of good wild trout. We will be stocking a small beat of the Wye at the bottom of the fishing with rainbow trout. These rainbow trout can not progress up stream because of weirs and hatches. This will provide an area of put and take fishing for our hotel guests and others who would like to take “one for the pot” without any aggressive interference with our wild stock. The Dukes Beat and Syndicate Water on the Lathkill and the Hall Beat on the Wye have benefited already from not receiving any stocked fish during the last 3 years. These Beats will benefit further by coming under the umbrella of the Habitat Improvement Scheme.