Free fishing- no catch for Sandwell council



Three years ago, this blog revealed that Sandwell council were making virtually nothing from fishing on its pools. 

Despite stating on its website that certain pools could be fished, and that there were various charges for doing so, an FOI request revealed that between April 2012-April 2017 they had sold just 10 season tickets and just two day tickets, making a grand total of £303.

I recently put in a follow up FOI to the council , as part of our lockdown litter campaign to get statistics between 2018-2020.

I asked

“I refer to the following link on your website
“Sandwell Council issues tickets which allows fishing at the following pools:
Dartmouth Park, West Bromwich
Swan Pool, Sandwell Valley Country Park, West Bromwich
Sheepwash Nature Reserve, Tipton
Hydes Pool, Woden Road South, Wednesbury
West Smethwick Park, Smethwick
Victoria Park, Tipton.
Fishing Fees and Charges for Sandwell Pools
Type of ticket
Adult Season Ticket
Under 16s / Over 60s Season Ticket
Adult per day (maximum 2 rods)
Under 16s / Over 60s per day (maximum 2 rods)
You can buy fishing season tickets from Sandwell Park Farm, please ask in the shop. Bring a passport size photo so we can issue you with your season ticket.”
Please provide information for the last 3 years for 2018, 2019, and to date 2020.
(I) Number of adult season tickets sold for each year
(ii) Number of under 16s/over 60’s season tickets sold for each year
(iii)Number of adult day tickets sold for each year
(iv) Number of under 16’s/over 60s day tickets sold for each year
Please provide the total revenue earned by the council from fishing between 1st January 2018 -1st July 2020.”

The council responded after some delay with a breakdown of the tickets and money sold and raised.



Adult                   1              £50.00

Concession        2              £50.00

Day                      2              £12.00



Concession        3              £77.25

Day                      1              £ 6.00


Concession        2              £51.50

Total £246.75


Once again it appears that little has changed in the years since I made the 2017 request, and that the council is rudderless on policy to address the issue of managing its waters and getting any value in allowing people to use the facilities. To use many other sporting facilities in the borough, you have to pay, yet these activities are not linked to such abysmal anti- social behaviour and littering as that associated with angling. In short FREE FISHING = TROUBLE, LITTER AND HOOKED BIRDS.

The council continue to make nothing from this , yet have to spend money clearing up after litter louts. Rescuers continue to have to deal with angling related litter and bad practice. There is no management, no deterrent and no policy to issue tickets. 

I have no idea why the politicians of this borough continue to ignore the evidence and unsustainability of the issues raised, but I will continue to raise them and the problems that free fishing causes in the borough- such as these.






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