everybody has a story to tell about their life

Me and fishing

Jack Rowe, 2013

Interviewer: It was something that was in your blood form the beginning?

Jack Rowe: Although we were in business, at the dinner table it was always fishing and boats.

Interviewer: And your brother Peter?

Jack Rowe: He did the same.

Interviewer: So you both fished together on the Francis Kate?

Jack Rowe: Peter and Dad used to work part-time in the little dory, 13 footer, which I went up to the Boat Show in 1963 or 64 and it was quite a different boat altogether to the conventional little dingy. I rather liked it and I bought it. I bought it back from Salcombe. My father was disgusted, he’s never seen anything looking so horrible in his life. He wouldn’t go out on it for a fortnight until we took out some diesel drums all filled up and he saw that she didn’t list over hardly at all and he was quite smitten. Then he went out in her and he was converted!

Interviewer: What was the Francis Kate?

Jack Rowe: Thirty eight foot. Trihedral hull

Interviewer: At the height of your fishing with that, you were fishing how many pots?

Jack Rowe: Seven hundred. We’d haul seven hundred nearly every day. We used to fish Lundy. We would stay on Lundy. They were awkward pots.

Interviewer: Am I correct in saying that there were not that many boats would stay put overnight? But you did actually stay out overnight if the weather conditions were conducive to doing that?

Jack Rowe: That’s right.

Interviewer: The Francis Kate was a one-off design wasn’t it?

Jack Rowe: Rod Baker built her up at Trewetha, a trihedral hull and everything was quite new for back in that time. Inboard, outboard drives. Of course the conventional drives won the day and down here they’re still on conventional drives. Quite a fast boat.

Interviewer: What year was it that you had the boat built for you? You and Peter?

Jack Rowe: ’78 ’79

Interviewer: And you ran her then for how many years?

Jack Rowe: Quite a few years I think until I was fifty five.

Interviewer: (Laughs) A young fifty five. I think your age now is ….?

Jack Rowe: Eighty four now.

Interviewer: So how many years did you fish altogether? That’s with the Francis Kate, the bigger boat, and before that you had a Dory, didn’t you?

Jack Rowe: Twenty plus I suppose.


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