We’re gonna need a bigger boat.

I can’t get to the boat at the moment. The local stretch of the Thames that I fish isn’t local enough (I’ve read the rules) and anyway, the River is over its banks. I look at the Government’s website every day to check the level where the punt’s moored. It’s been over the line above which ‘local flooding is likely’ for weeks now. I phoned the lock keeper and asked him if he’d keep an eye on it for me:

All right mate, I’ll see what I can do. The only way off this island is to rope onto the weir and get across to the pub car park. I’ve got to go over there later anyway. The car park’s flooded and I need to move my car. They’ve said I should go and stay in a hotel in Reading. No thanks. I’m going to the village to fill my rucksack with beer, fags and pizza and get back to the cottage.

He’s a great bloke. I haven’t heard from him since.

‘He can’t go down with three barrels…not with three barrels on he can’t.’

We may be lucky -removed a comma here- if things go well with the vaccine and the river levels. John, Clem and me, we’re hoping to get back on the river to chase some whoppers from our boats, like Quint here. A big chub, or perhaps a huge pike. Rod and line should be enough, but you never know. There might be something swimming in the river between Oxford and Twickenham that’ll need three barrels, or even four. The stepped-up Richard Walker MK IV carp rod will have to be put to one side in favour of the Greener Light Harpoon Gun. It’s the model that Quint used, until things went wrong for him.

Note that I said ‘Light’ harpoon gun, rather than the medium or heavy. We’re not savages.

Greener’s Light Harpoon Gun.

We get all sorts in our workshop. As you can see, this very nice example, the property of a gentleman, is fully fitted out for some dainty harpooning.

We appreciate that some of you may prefer to pursue the nobler winter fish -pike, perch, chub and grayling, with conventional rods and lines. We can’t see you now, unless you would like to arrange a video call or Teams meeting with us (you can so), but if you wish to discuss the purchase or commission of a fine split cane, carbon fibre or fibreglass rod from us, it would be super to hear from you.

Please keep an eye on the stock section of our website. Soon, there will be some succulent fishing rods for you to consider -a full set of Constable of Bromley’s famed Wallop Brook split cane fly rods (designed by the late Dermot Wilson), built up by me using all original Constable blanks and fittings, a Chris Yates MK I Barbus Maximus, a Kennet Perfection, a Tom Moran fly rod, many other rods once they can safely be got to us, and absolutely no harpoon guns.

Until next time, look after yourselves, your loved ones and good luck when you go fishing locally.

Edward Barder & Colin Whitehouse