Anglers caught out by fishing ban at Goldendale Pool in Tunstall
ANGLERS have been banned from fishing at a popular pool.
The order means people walking or fishing at Goldendale Pool, in Tunstall will now be trespassing on the site.
Landowner Russell Porter today admitted he has plans for the land off Reginald Mitchell Way and is currently carrying out work to create access for vehicles to the site.
The 43-year-old, of Newcastle, who refused to divulge details of the plans, said: "I would just like to ask fishermen to be patient.
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"The site is all overgrown and has been untouched for years, so at the moment we are working to clear part of the land.
"I want to work with the anglers and I understand they are frustrated but they have to appreciate that this is something I want to do.
"We have never had an agreement with the anglers to allow them to use the pool, so I hope they can also appreciate that it is private land and that their needs are secondary.
"I am working with Stoke-on-Trent City Council to ensure the work which is being carried out is all above board because part of the land is within a conservation area." Work carried out so far includes felling a row of trees and erecting a sign warning users that the site is out of bounds.
It is not yet known when, or if, fishing will resume, but Mr Porter admitted it will be at least after Christmas.
Now pool visitors fear the pond could be filled in or the area turned into a marina for boats.
Jeff Bradbury, of Fenton, who uses the site for walks, said: "Goldendale Pool is a very popular fishing venue which holds a substantial stock of large, high quality fish.
"It looks to me like preparatory work is underway to fill the pool in.
"The pool is a picturesque refuge for nature and a valuable and pleasant asset to this part of the city so I want to know if it is at risk of being destroyed."
The move comes three years after a teenager died in a swimming accident at the site.
Eighteen-year-old Damien Brian drowned in the pool after getting into difficulties while attempting to swim to the other side. The former James Brindley Science College pupil, of Machin Street, Tunstall, attempted the swim with a group of friends, but got into difficulty and disappeared under the water after his legs got tangled in weeds.
City council planning officers are monitoring developments at the site.
Councillor Ruth Rosenau, cabinet member for regeneration, planning and transportation, said: "We visited the site on Tuesday and examined the work done so far.
"The work which has been done has cleared the existing pathways, and there is no evidence of any unauthorised work that would require planning permission.
"There are several small trees that have been felled, however, they appear to be outside the conservation area, and don't need permission to be cut down."