Nostalgia - 1970 - Draining the Sleaford ballast pits to catch pike

The ballast pits near Sleaford's Bass Maltings were being pumped out for the first time in centuries back in December 1970. EMN-191219-172225001
The ballast pits near Sleaford's Bass Maltings were being pumped out for the first time in centuries back in December 1970. EMN-191219-172225001

We mentioned recently in our Pages From The Past that back at the beginning of December 1970, work started to pump out the old ballast pits beside the railway line next to the Bass maltings in Sleaford.

Apparently it had not been done for centuries - since the Bristol Estates acquired them in 1604.

The reason for the epic task was to drain the large ponds and get rid of the increasing number of pike which were menacing the waters and killing off all the other fish, leaving nothing for the anglers.

As you can see, a large pump was installed on the bank, and a rowing boat was moored at the ready to rescue any fish as small ‘islands’ began to appear above the lowering water level. Can you remember this?