Jacob Herford banks Shoulders from the Essex Quarry!

Jacob Herford had a fantastic return to the Quarry, in Essex, and immediately got amongst the fish, culminating in the capture of his first UK forty!

He’d been away from the venue for over ten years, and the original stock had grown significantly bigger in the meantime, and it took him just three nights to land the big ‘un, Shoulders, at 44lb 4oz.

Jacob revealed: “After ten years away from the lake I decided it was time to make a return and have a go for the remaining originals in the Quarry.

“On my first night back on there I managed to catch four carp, topped by an original called Lee’s Fish at a little over 30lb, and I was over-the-moon to have had one of the originals so soon.

“The following week I was back for another night and managed to get back in the same swim, which resulted in another fish of 22lb. I was really chuffed to have caught a few in such a short space of time, having been away for so long.

“On my third night I arrived to find the lake very busy with twelve anglers already fishing, but I knew where I needed to be and where the fish would be, and made the long barrow trip round to the spot.

“As I looked out between the island my theory was confirmed as there were carp everywhere. I placed three rods in likely looking areas with the minimum of disturbance, just putting out a light scattering of bait with the throwing stick. I was using a mix of chod and ‘Ronnie’ rigs – with size 8 Choddy hooks, or size 6 Kurv Shanks on the ‘Ronnie’ rig with a bit of putty on the shank to give a very slow sinking pop-up over light weed.

“After a frustrating night with numerous liners, I had a really aggressive bite at 7am, with line being stripped from the spool quickly until I clamped down and connected with a heavy resistance.

“The fish plodded its way towards me, kicking up huge plumes of bubbles, and deep down in the clear margins I could see that it was a good mirror, but I couldn’t work out which fish it was until she turned and I caught a glimpse of the scales by the wrist of her tail. I then knew that it was Shoulders, and seconds later a huge head popped up and she was mine.

“She looked absolutely huge and I called some friends to help with the weighing and photos, and at 44lb 4oz, a new PB, I was, and still am, blown away by it all. I drove to work the next morning with a huge grin on my face!”