The alarm went off at just after 6.20am it was the start of a day where I would travel from South West London to East London and then onto Grantham in Lincolnshire and that would all be done by noon.
First top was to see the eloquent Mr Andrews in Spitalfields Market just to get my weekly fix of vintage Tackle For The Soul. In fact the visit to Spitalfields was to find a vintage medical cabinet for my friend the artist David Hornblow. Unfortunately there was nothing that matched the brief.
Mr Andrews of Arcadia had a fine array of tackle, books, collectables, fishing bags and Barbours for sale. Tempted as I was with a small cane rod by a South London maker I knew I had a journey to continue so passed it by on this occasion.
I then headed back to Kings Cross to get the 11.08 East Coast train to York, I was to leave the train at Grantham in Lincolnshire, there I would meet Paul Dady a fellow fisher, typographer, artist, sculptor, carpenter, float makers, rod restorer this list is endless. He is a very talented yet humble man.
We took to the road to head to back to his home to discuss a project he is working on. Paul is a man with a shed, a two room shed that was built entirely out of cast offs, skip finds and his talent to make something out of nothing.
What came to light from our conversations was that this quite man had immense talent, an eye for detail and skills that I wish I had. I met Paul just over a year ago via eBay, I purchased a couple of his hand-made floats for perch fishing, they were simply outstanding and to date haven’t seen the water as I just like looking at them. I have a handful of floats in an old French preserve jar on my desk, all different yet beautiful items to look at. One thought from the day was that why are so many fisherman connected to creative or manual skills?
In conversation we found ourselves similar and one thing that came up was that Paul’s grandfather was an Armourer at the same airfield my stepfathers father was a pilot, flying a Lancaster out of Waddington, could he have loaded the plane that Sergeant Leslie C Hazell flew for 9 Squadron? Paul knew he loaded planes for the 1000 bomber raid.
Our chance meeting may have been more of destiny than pure chance. I will help Paul with his project to produce a range of cast bronze fish. At this stage he is still carving and moulding the fish, what I will do is help him make his passion for all thing to do with fish and fishing into what may be a viable income stream as a prominent artist and sculptor of the finest fish bronzes. He does have a set of credentials that could put him amongst the best in the business for he has produced fish that are in museums around the world, yet know one really who he is…well not for now.
It’s amazing what a man with a shed can do….