An aerial vew of Betchcott Lake near Church Stretton in ShropshireBetchcott Lake

Church Stretton


Betchcott becomes members only day ticket water

Betchcott Lake will become a members only day ticket water from 31 July, 2020. Although membership will be free, numbers will be capped. Day ticket prices for members will remain the same at £6.00 for one or two rods and £7.00 for three rods. Invited guests who fish with a member will be charged £8.00.

Anyone who is not a member will be denied access as the gates will remain locked at all times with members being given a code for the gate and updated when the code is changed.

The decision has been made to ensure Betchcott remains a pleasant fishery for anglers to enjoy and for the benefit of fish stocks.

Anglers interested in becoming a member should email

Betchcott LakeIf you love fishing virtually virgin waters in remote locations where the emphasis is on getting away from it all and catching fish in delightful locations - then Betchcott Lake will suit you down to the ground.

Set in an area of outstanding natural beauty in the heart of the Shropshire countryside, Betchcott Lake is at the end of a farm track which rises gently across a field. As you approach the end the landscape suddenly unfolds revealing an attractive and natural looking lake which belies the fact that it was actually man-made about forty years ago by daming a shallow valley.

Betchcott LakeThe chances are that you will fall in love with it at first sight - which is exactly what happened four years ago to angling pals Neil Wilson and Colin Cox when they saw an advert on an estate agency website offering the lake for sale.

Neil and Colin are members of the same fishing club in Birmingham and had been looking to purchase a fishery for some time but nothing lived up to their expectations until they saw Betchcott. As Neil said: "Typical of most anglers, we had both wanted to own a lake of our own for a long time and although Betchcott was further away from Birmingham than we would have liked, it is well worth the extra travelling."

Betchcott LakeAnd Colin said: "Betchcott is not an out-and-out commercial fishery and it is our intention to create and maintain it as a natural looking mixed coarse fishery with plenty of fish. If you want peace and tranquility and a good day's fishing this is the place to come."

Betchcott operates an honesty box paying system where anglers should take an envelope from the wooden box by the signs, place their day ticket monies into it and place it in the letter box. They should write their car registration number on the envelope.

2021 day ticket costs

Day Tickets - all anglers
£6.00 (one/two rods)
£7.00 (three rods)

Guests fishing with a member are charged at £8.00
Anglers should put their day ticket money in the Honesty Box next to the gate

Bettchcott LakeBetchcott Lake

At two-and-a-half acres in size, Betchott Lake is roughly triangular in shape and currently offers around 12 pegs, six of which are purpose made pitches. Depths vary from between two to three feet in the far left hand corner as you come onto the lake to 12 feet in the centre off the dam wall. There is generally three to four feet of water in the margins shelving gradually towards the centre. As with all fisheries, it is worth taking time to plumb the depths.

There's plenty of open water on Betchcott Lake near Church StrettonWhen Colin and Neil took over the water it was known to hold a decent head of common and mirror carp to about 13lbs but averaging between 7lbs and 8lbs plus tench to about 4lbs and a good head of roach around the 12oz mark.

Since then they have stocked the lake with more tench, common and mirror carp, small crucian carp, six to eight inch barbel and breeding sized bream. They are also planning to rebuild the lake's stock of golden orfe, a species which they have been told the lake used to be famous for until recent years.

A typical catch of Betchcott fishSince taking ownership, Betchcott Lake has only been fished by Neil, Colin, some of their friends and families plus a few local anglers and those staying in the holiday cottages at nearby Middle Farm. From what they say it seems all types of tactics work well.

Those anglers targeting the carp have caught using both modern and more traditional techniques with boilies, meat, pellets, sweetcorn and bread baits all consistently producing fish.

Those looking to catch silver fish say pole and waggler both work well with sweetcorn, casters, maggots, pellets, meat and bread again working well for all species. Generally speaking though, all baits work well. Maggots will get you plenty of roach and small carp up in the water, pellet will get you the bigger carp whilst prawn and shrimp have been successful for the tench.

There's plenty of open water on Betchcott Lake near Church StrettonLike many fisheries these days anglers should not use keepnets whilst the only bait bans are that trout pellets, beans, Tiger nuts and dog biscuits should not be used.

Anglers should use an unhooking mat and the maximum permitted hook size is Size 8. Anglers should also not light fires or bar-b-cues on the site. Please note that night fishing is not permitted. A full set of rules is displayed on the notice board as you enter the fishery.

Some nice Betchcott Lake fish...

A nice Betchcott Lake mirrorA Betchcott Lake commonAnd a handsome Betchcott Lake tench

...and some more photographs of Betchcott Lake

Betchcott Lake near Church StrettonBetchcott Lake near Church StrettonBetchcott Lake in Shropshire
Betchcott Lake near Church StrettonBetchcott Lake in ShropshireBetchcott Lake near Church Stretton

How to get there...

Click on the map for more detailThe easiest way to reach Betchcott Lake at Betchcott - also known as Batchcote - is to get onto the main A49 Shrewsbury to Leominster road and head for Church Stretton.

Travelling south from Shrewsbury, before you reach Church Stretton turn right into Church Road at Dorrington and head for Picklescott. Go as far as you can until you reach the T-junction at Picklescott and turn right. Continue along here for a short way and take the left turn to Betchcott and All Stretton. Look for Middle Farm on the left and you will see the gateway and entrance to the lake immediately opposite on the right.

Alternatively, driving on the A49 from the south, look out for Farm Lane on the left signed All Stretton after leaving Church Stretton and follow this to the T-junction with Shrewsbury Road. Turn right into Shrewsbury Road and take the second left into Castle Hill. Follow this narrow road up and over the Long Mynd continuing straight on all the way to Betchcott where you will find Middle Farm on the right and the gated entrance to the track leading to the lake on the left.

Click on the map for greater detail

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