Hugh Falkus

Award-winning film director and angling writer Hugh Falkus was born in Surrey on 15th May, 1917. Hugh’s achievements were many and varied: he was a daring and highly competitive yachtsman, an outstanding sportsman and a talented actor, writer and producer. Hugh enjoyed fishing for sea trout and firmly established himself as the father of modern sea trout fishing. He shared his enthusiasm for angling in two of his BBC films, Salmo the Leaper and Self Portrait of a Happy Man, which enticed many viewers to become salmon and sea trout anglers.

Hugh was also an accomplished author and three of his classic works are still in print: Sea Trout Fishing (1962), Salmon Fishing (1984) and Freshwater Fishing (with Fred Buller, 1975). Another often overlooked book, Successful Angling (1977), was penned by Fred Buller, Fred J. Taylor, Richard Walker and Hugh, four renowned anglers of the second half of the twentieth century.

In 1965, Hugh Falkus wrote The Stolen Years, and his plan that it would be the first in a trilogy. He worked on a second manuscript from time to time, but sadly, the book never materialised and was largely forgotten. Some of it Was Fun is certainly part, if not all, of that ‘lost’ manuscript.

Hugh’s life was never without drama and it was as rich in suffering and failure as it was in glory. During the Second World War, he was shot down in his Spitfire on the eve of the Battle of Britain and taken prisoner by the Germans. His post-war years were severely affected by the drowning at sea of his second wife and three friends - a tragedy for which Falkus blamed only himself - and an unhappy third marriage. Hugh died after a long battle with illness on 30th March, 1996.

Hugh Falkus: A Life on The Edge is the biography written by Chris Newton and published by the Medlar Press in December 2007.