Our 100-acre site boasts some spectacular views making us one of the most picturesque Norfolk nature reserves. With four lakes and situated by an old weir and mill pool on the River Wensum, Taverham is a haven for anglers, walkers and nature lovers.
An anglers’ paradise, in our lakes you can fish for tench, roach, perch and pike as well as stock up on tackle at our on-site store.
Those on a family day out can take one of the trails and explore the abundance of wildlife that make Taverham Mill its home.
Taverham Mill Key Info
What is it like?
The lake is 21 acres in size and is broken up by many appealing-looking channels with plenty of access to open water. Taverham boasts many features to fish to; from islands, plateaus to gravel bars – all sorts for the fish to frequent and search out, plus lots of cover. It is a real maze of a water, which makes it so intriguing at times.
The average depth is between 5ft-8ft, so the fish can be found more often than not, basking in the sun, bubbling or porpoising clean out of the water – something you can witness at any time of day.
The lake is steeped in history and actually originates pre-wartime. As such, it is incredibly mature; featuring lily pads, overhanging trees, weed and an abundance of naturals that thrive in the lake. It really is an interesting venue and very rich so the fish always have food.
In Mills Lake, the stock is around 400-450 fish; mirrors and commons, with strains like a box of all sorts – some priories, Dintons, VS and more, there are even a few very old Leney mirrors, which are breathtaking. Again, this makes it very interesting angling with each and every fish different. Ten to twelve of the fish break the magical 30lb barrier but there is a lot of 20lb plus fish, many of which are nice, scaly mirrors. The water is also crystal clear, so they are lovely, dark specimens in mint condition. To be honest, they don’t get caught a lot, probably due to the snaggy haven that they live in – it can be a tricky nut to crack.
The water is also crystal clear, so they are lovely, dark specimens in mint condition
How do you choose a swim?
There aren’t really any best areas on the lake as such. This is due to the vast amount of features, and sanctuary, that covers the whole pond – the carp can quite literally be spread all over and generally you will always have a few in front of you.
My best advice is to keep walking around the pond looking for fish. Make sure that you have some polarising sunglasses on you at all times. Look in all the snaggy areas, the little nooks and crannies, because fish will be somewhere. In places, there are clear areas and channels in between the weed beds which are telltale spots that they feed on. The fish do show, so they will often reveal their whereabouts particularly at first and last light.
Swims worth noting are Lilypad Bay, they get right in the corner there. Also, the swim at the end of Lilypad Bay commands lots of water, again, which they frequent. This applies to winter too!
What are the best tactics on Taverham Mill?
The most important thing for Taverham Mill is receiving a drop. By that, I mean you MUST be able to feel the lead down to the lake bed. It is extremely weedy and covered in pads, so you need to ensure that your rig is presented on the lake bed and not hung up.
Consequently, I recommend that you search and explore the area with a bare lead and braided main line first of all to try and pinpoint a nice area of the bottom. Have a really good look. There are lots of nice gullies off the back of gravel bars which can be really good.
Smooth, harder areas of silt can also be rewarding. These aren’t as easy to find but if you can spend time researching and learning the contours of the bottom, it will reward you in the long run.
In terms of rig, I will normally fish with a helicopter presentation, again to combat the silty bottom. The hooklength will feature a nice, long boom section which will rest nicely on top of any detritus. The colour of the lake is quite dark too, this is down to a special dye that is introduced to try and keep the weed at bay. As such, bright, stinky, potent hook baits can work well.
The water sees a lot of Pacific Tuna boilies so they are a good shout. In terms of baiting techniques, I feel that spread baiting can be fruitful, using a catapult or stick to encourage them to graze and work for each bait.
Stalking can work at times too, little carefully placed traps with just a handful of food over the top can work very well at times, just keep nice and quiet.
Floater fishing is very tricky at Taverham due to the large amount of birdlife.
Use your eyes. Keeping on your toes, searching out the fish is the main factor in succeeding on Taverham because they do move. There is a good head of fish in there, so there are plenty of chances to be had if you fish effectively. Travel light, cut the gear down a bit and stay mobile!
What You Need To Know!
You will need a barrow. The car park is a bit of stroll so travel light with the barrow.
Taverham Mill Rules
Harry is fishery manager on Taverham Mill, so has experience within lake management. He is a respected angler and has caught many from around the Norfolk & Cambs area.