We have two reservoirs in East Sussex: Arlington, near Polegate, and Ardingly, near Haywards Heath. These reservoirs are popular attractions and offer visitors a chance to take part in fishing, bird watching, or simply enjoy the peace and tranquillity.
However, their main benefit is that they can store up to 8,300 million litres of water.
Built in the 1970s to meet the growing demand for drinking water, together they provide 8% of all the water we supply, with the rest coming from underground aquifers and transfers from neighbouring water companies.
Set in 120 acres of spectacular landscape near Berwick, in East Sussex, Arlington is filled with water pumped from the River Cuckmere when river flows are high. The water is then stored in the reservoir before being treated and distributed to customers.
The reservoir, which sits below the South Downs and the Long Man of Wilmington, has been designated as a Local Nature Reserve. Arlington has also been classified as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, thanks to our extensive conservation work to improve and protect the habitats of several native species. It is a prized location for bird watchers and visitors who flock to follow the picturesque Osprey Trail.
Trout fishing at Arlington
Our trout fishing season opens at the end of January and closes at sunset on the last Saturday in June. Arlington has a well-deserved reputation for excellent fly fishing with hard-fighting, superbly conditioned, great tasting trout. With its outstanding scenery, Arlington is a perfect venue for anglers seeking a productive day from either bank or boat – no other recreation activities are allowed on the reservoir, so peace is guaranteed.
How to find Arlington Reservoir:
Arlington Reservoir can be found approximately 1.5 miles north of the A27 Lewes to Eastbourne road from the Drusillas roundabout – signposted to Berwick Station and Upper Dicker.
Full address: Arlington Reservoir, Berwick, Near Polegate, East Sussex, BN26 6TF
Set in an area of outstanding natural beauty in the heart of West Sussex, Ardingly reservoir is filled with water pumped from the River Ouse when river flows are high. The water is stored in the reservoir before being treated and distributed to customers.
Ardingly is home to a great number of bird species for keen bird watchers and the Kingfisher nature trail offers a tranquil walk for those who like to experience the great outdoors.
Activities at Ardingly Reservoir
The reservoir is home to a first-class sailing school, the Ardingly Activity Centre, which has introduced thousands to the thrill and challenge of sailing, windsurfing and canoeing.
How to find Ardingly Reservoir:
Ardingly Reservoir can be found approximate 1.5 miles to the southwest of Ardingly village. Take College Road out of the village and shortly after passing Ardingly College take the next right turn, signposted to The Farmhouse Pre-Prep and Nursery. Continue to the end of the road, passing in front of Shellbrook Water Treatment Works on the left.