About Priory Fishery

 

Priory fish are produced from the farm’s own broodstock, grown on in purpose-built, professionally managed ponds.

 

About Our Fishery

The fish farm was established in 1973 by Stephen Gratwicke, Priory Fishery is the longest established and largest self-contained coarse fish farm in the country.

carp stock
tench netted

Tom Downe

After Completing a BSc (Hons) Degree in Fishery Management and Aquaculture at Sparsholt College, Tom went straight into Carp farming in Devon, having moved from Sussex to pursue his chosen Career.

After 3 years Carp farming, a Job came up at Priory (2010), which eventually led to taking over the company with his Business Partner Jez Harris.

Tom Downe – Priory Fishery – Director

Jez Harris

Having spent several years working abroad in the hospitality trade, Jez returned to the Uk in 2010 and joined the farm working alongside Tom.
A passionate angler, who has gained a wealth of knowledge regarding fishery Management. Always happy to give advice and go the extra mile when it comes to customer service.

Jez Harris – Priory Fishery Director.

Tom Downe

After Completing a BSc (Hons) Degree in Fishery Management and Aquaculture at Sparsholt College, Tom went straight into Carp farming in Devon, having moved from Sussex to pursue his chosen Career.

After 3 years Carp farming, a Job came up at Priory (2010), which eventually led to taking over the company with his Business Partner Jez Harris.

Tom Downe – Priory Fishery – Director

Jez Harris

Having spent several years working abroad in the hospitality trade, Jez returned to the Uk in 2010 and joined the farm working alongside Tom.
A passionate angler, who has gained a wealth of knowledge regarding fishery Management. Always happy to give advice and go the extra mile when it comes to customer service.

Jez Harris – Priory Fishery Director.

How It All Began

Initially rearing Trout, production at Priory switched exclusively to Carp in the late 1970s and other coarse fish were to follow in the coming years.

In 2010 Tom Downe took over the running of Priory Fishery alongside Jez Harris. In 2016 Stephen Gratwicke retired and the business was taken on by Tom and Jez.

Priory has since expanded to include over 70 ponds across 4 sites, producing Specimen Carp, Crucian Carp, Tench, Bream and Golden Rudd.

 

The Correct Technique For The Job

Using some of the most advanced husbandry and hatchery techniques imported from aquaculture experts in Hungary, Priory Fishery have optimised production to reach between 500 and 750,000 mixed coarse fish per year. Tom, a former student at Sparsholt College, Hampshire is growing the business with his partner Jez Harris. Tom has groups of students on the farm for work experience and is always keen to pass on his experience to the next generation.

 

Priory Fishery, Kingsford Fish Farm, Pirzwell ponds and Higher weaver ponds

The fish farm at Priory takes in around 40 ponds, all individually aerated and fed with natural spring water to ensure an oxygen rich, disease and stress free environment to allow large scale production whilst maintaining the health of the stock. A large hatchery and an extensive holding and grading facility allow Priory to selectively spawn from handpicked brood stock and supply the biggest customers efficiently.

Priory’s second site is Kingsford Fish Farm, three miles from the main site. Purpose built in 2000 it is predominantly used for the on growing of our second and third year fish. With six acres of water split between 10 ponds, this is an integral part of the Priory Fishery operation, enabling us to produce the numbers of fish required for the growing market.

Our third site is Pirzwell Ponds which consists of 11, 1 acre ponds. Pirzwell ponds site is used for 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th year fish. Purpose built, this site has increased the production of our bigger fish enabling us to meet the growing demand for bigger Carp.

In 2015 we expanded our operation to include the site at Higher Weaver, which includes 6 purpose-built ponds totalling 10 acres of water. This site is predominantly for our specimen Carp and Bream.

Sales To Meet Demand

We have sold and continue to sell fish to many of the major fishing clubs in the country as well as privately owned fisheries large and small.

Carp Stock

A Carp is just a Carp? Well you would have thought so but we would like to show you different. The strain of Carp we breed at the Priory is unique to our farm and was created 30 + years ago by crossing two very distinctive strains.

 

Bream Stock

Another of those fish which is very popular either in a match style fishery or for your pleasure/mixed fishery, giving fantastic sport.

 

Tench Stock

One of the most popular fish around and always very much in demand by our customers. A must in any mixed fishery, the Tench is a hard fighting fish and very resilient to the everyday fishery life.

 

Crucian Carp

We originally sourced Crucians from two different lakes so that we had not only two different gene pools, but also we were very careful to make sure they were "true" Crucians and were not brown goldfish.

Golden Rudd

For adding a bit of colour to any fishery the Golden Rudd, like its blander relative is a fantastic sporting fish and great for filling the keep net when other fish are not so obliging.

Our Fishery Blog

Summer Time Feed And Weed

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