The Opening Sequence

The opening sequence sets up the entire series, explaining why ‘Mr. Crabtree Goes Fishing’ has been an inspiration to John Bailey and to millions of anglers, and what ‘Fishing in the Footsteps of Mr. Crabtree’ is all about.

Episode One – Tench

In this episode we see Sam and John fishing predominantly for Tench using classic and contemporary methods alike and ringing the changes as they target their prey over a two-day period. We feel the palpable tension as they get ever closer to catching…. Will they do it?

 Episode Two – Rivers

The companions, John and his protegee Tadhg, visit many stretches over their two days together, comparing urban and rural waters, discussing the evolution of a river and the positive impact of angling as a community builder. We witness their joy in the simple pleasure of an unprompted fishing match as the tutor takes on his young charge…. Who will win?

Episode Three – Lakes

Nine year old Henry from Devon is happy to fish in all weathers and his enthusiasm never wanes as he and John spend a contented two days fishing numerous lakes, deploying different methods and tactics depending on the environment and enjoying the natural world as they fish for all species.

Episode Four – Carp

10-year-old Michael from Coventry comes to us wanting to catch Carp, and as with many youngsters today, this means BIG fish. This presents a complex quandary for John in episode four. We see Michael catch his big fish, and John’s internal wrangling over whether he’s taken the right approach – will he manage to convey to Michael the true joy of fishing in their two days together?

Episode Five – Barbel

Jaynie, 14 and Claragh, 12 from Glasgow are largely sea and game anglers so placing them knee-deep in the Wye to fish for Barbel presented a big challenge. Add to that the challenges of rising waters and swollen rivers and we see a more contemplative John in this episode, scanning the twists and turns of water he knows and loves so well for signs of fish and working constantly to guide the sisters in their quest for Barbel. They find Chub, but will they capture the elusive Barbel?


Episode Six – Pike

For the final episode in the series we’re back working a multitude of waters to find Mr. Pike. Fishing with 14-year-old James from Wales, we feel the obvious sense of comradery present in two anglers with a common goal. John and James fish for Pike in rivers, lakes and weir pools; early mornings are obligatory and in this episode we join the anglers as the misty dawn breaks around them. As John discusses summer piking and the peculiar challenges it presents, we experience with them the agony of darting fish and missed strikes. They’re certainly working hard enough, but will they find their fish?