Spy cameras to deter fish poachers at Bilsthorpe ponds

Rippon Homes's site manager Keith Richards (left) with Mark Johnson, of Bilsthorpe Fisheries.
Rippon Homes's site manager Keith Richards (left) with Mark Johnson, of Bilsthorpe Fisheries.

New CCTV cameras have been installed to help combat poaching at private fish-ponds in Bilsthorpe, thanks to a donation by a local housebuilder.

Members of Bilsthorpe Fisheries, a not-for-profit voluntary club that looks after the ponds, has had to endure six years of poaching, which has left the stocks of fish severely depleted.

But now Rippon Homes, which has built six bungalows nearby, has handed over £750 towards the purchase of the cameras, which will be used to monitor the ponds.

The company’s managing director, Ian Dyke, said: “Bilsthorpe Fisheries provides activities and areas of wildlife for the people of Bilsthorpe to enjoy.

“We are committed to supporting local communities wherever we build new homes, so it was only natural that we wanted to help out.”

Formed about 15 years ago, the club worked hard to encourage flowers, fauna and wildlife to flourish by creating the ponds from what were muddy holes left over by the former Bilsthorpe Colliery site. But attempts to restore aquatic life have been thwarted by the illegal fishing of non-members.

“For the past six years, we have experienced poaching at the ponds, which we work hard to maintain for the members of the club to use,” said Mark Johnson, of Bilsthorpe Fisheries. “The new CCTV cameras will enable us to keep a closer eye on the ponds. We are grateful for Rippon Homes’s support.”

The housebuilder’s bungalows are on a new development called The Larches, which is on Eakring Road. Priced at £179,500, all but one of the three-bedroomed homes have been sold. They come with fully-fitted kitchens, an en-suite shower room to the master bedroom, fitted blinds and light fittings, and a single garage.