Hugh Miles and Martin Bowler have finally sealed a deal to get their critically-acclaimed Catching the Impossible series shown on terrestrial TV.
Channel 4 has bought the licence to the eight-part show, which follows AT columnist Martin and well-known actor Bernard Cribbins as they travel the country in pursuit of impossibly big fish.
Each of the hour-long programmes will go out at 7am on Sunday mornings starting from June 13 and, if enough viewers tune in, Channel 4 could re-run the series in a prime time slot at a later date.
“To have the opportunity to raise the profile of angling is terrific and right from the outset that was always the goal. The aim was to get on to terrestrial television and now we’ve got it, we need good audience figures.
If we do, it might encourage others to make fishing programmes for TV,” said Hugh.
“It’s been a long journey and we’ve had to jump through a lot of hoops along the way, but I never gave up. We got close with BBC4 and then ITV, before finally getting the okay from Channel 4. For a quiet and unfashionable sport like angling to make the schedules, where the main stars are the fish and the countryside, is amazing,” he added.
AT columnist Martin Bowler was equally excited by the news, insisting that getting on mainstream TV would be the highlight of an already exceptional angling career.
“The biggest ‘impossible’ wasn’t catching the fish, it was getting the programme on terrestrial.
“The main aim was always to showcase how special and amazing our fish and fisheries are and to share them with the wider public. Yes, it’s great news for the sport of angling, but personally I hope it proves even better news for the fish and goes some way to helping improve their protection.” Legendary TV personality Bernard Cribbins, who provided the commentary on Hugh’s earlier award-winning angling series A Passion For Angling, joined in the celebrations.
“It’s fantastic news. Fishing with Martin was a great experience and I was delighted to have the opportunity to work with Hugh again. I caught my best-ever pike, landed my biggest carp and got loads of stick for my ancient Mitchell 300s.”