Finished in 1818, the Pocklington Canal is a relatively broad canal which runs for 9.5 miles through nine locks from the Canal Head near Pocklington, to the River Derwent which it joins near East Cottingwith. Most of it lies within a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest.
Much of the canal is shallow, silted and increasingly encroached by weed and reeds. However, these do lead to a very rich and varied environment which attracts a multitude of bird life, and the quiet and careful angler can often be rewarded with views of kingfishers and little grebes; perfect when the fish aren’t biting!
Species and Tactics
Tench and roach are the most common species and both run to a reasonable size. The best of the tench fishing occurs early and late during warm, settled weather. There are plenty of pike, mostly jacks though occasionally fish running well into double-figures are caught. Decent bream are present but rather localized in distribution. Carp have been stocked by the YDAA. Other species include perch and eels.
From York, for Canal Head at Pocklington, take the A1079 through Kexby, Wilberfoss towards Pocklington. About two miles after the left-turn for Pocklington and passed the old airfield, turn right and park behind the houses. For Hagg Bridge and Cottingworth, take the B1228 from York through Elivington and Sutton upon Derwent. Hagg Bridge is approximately 1 mile after the sharp left bend as you exit Sutton upon Derwent. Parking is by the side of the road. For East Cottingworth, continue on the B1228 a short distance and then follow signs for Cottingworth then East Cottingworth. Parking is down by the canal off Canal Lane.