A GIANT fish which made waves around the world when she was caught in a local pool nearly 75 years ago is set to make headlines again – when the preserved specimen goes under the hammer for thousands of pounds.

‘Clarissa the Carp’ weighed a record-breaking 44lbs when she was fished out of Redmire Pool between Llangarron and Glewstone by renowned angler and author Richard Walker on September 12, 1952.

She went on to become a star attraction at London Zoo, and preserved in a glass case, she’s now set to fetch a whopping £40,000 at auction.

Clarissa’s capture is considered the single most important event in carp-fishing history which paved the way for modern day angling, breaking the previous record by nearly 13lbs and going on to live at London Zoo Aquarium until 1972.

Bernithan Court where Clarissa was caught
Bernithan Court where Clarissa was caught (Strutt & Parker)

Her record stood for 28 years until a fish weighing 51½ lbs was caught in 1980 at the same Bernithan Court pool near Ross-on-Wye.

Now the original skin mount of Clarrisa is set to go under the hammer at Mullock Jones Auctioneers in Shropshire with a giant estimate of £35,000-£40,000.

Auctioneer Ben Jones said: "This is a unique opportunity to obtain arguably the most important preserved specimen carp.

“This extremely important example promoted the modern day carp angling movement. Five known cast replica copies were produced, with this being the original unique specimen.

“The capture of Clarissa the record breaking 44lb carp in 1952 propelled Richard Walker into the record books and carp fishing royalty for life."

The fish is mounted in a glazed bow-fronted case, with gilt writing and border, set in a naturalistic reed and gravel setting.

Originally mounted by a taxidermist for £80, it was restored in 2011 by Barry Williams, of Cannock, Staffs.

Clarissa has been kept at a fishing tackle shop in Coventry, which has now decided to part with it at an auction on July 24 and 25.

Walker helped create the Carp Catchers Club to study the fish, their habits and behaviour.

He believed a 40lb carp could exist in British waters but was ridiculed by anglers and the press before catching the fish on a one-inch, two-piece split cane rod made in his garden shed.

The famous Richard Walker Mk4 was born and has become the cult rod for carp traditionalists.

He fished with no float, knots or lead and the bait was a homemade mix of paste and bread crust.

Richard later recalled: "I rang the London Zoo and said, 'Do you want a 40-pound carp?' They said, 'We've got a 14-pound carp.'

“And then I said, 'Not a 14-pound carp - a forty-pound carp!'

“The man at the other end made some terse comments about how he did wish hoaxers would think of something better to do on a Saturday morning.

“Then I had to put it fairly bluntly. I said, 'Now look, I say this carp is over 40lb and I’ve got it here and you can have it if you like.

“If you don’t want it I’m sure Bristol Zoo would be glad to have it and they would not have so far to come...

“If you send out a vehicle and something to fetch this fish in and you find it’s a hoax - all right you’ve wasted a journey.

“But if you don’t send it out and your employers at the Zoological Society find somebody else has got the carp because you wouldn’t believe me, I think you might be in worse trouble.

"So he said, 'I'll send for it.' About six hours later a van arrived with a tub and two obviously unbelieving people who thought it was going to be a hoax.

“They were quite surprised to find it wasn’t!”