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Pollard was himself a keen angler and painted several small pictures on the theme. This charming scene forms a pair with 'Trolling for Pike in the River Lee', also in the Tate collection. The locations for many of these fishing subjects were on the outskirts of London; this view shows the Ferry Boat Inn at Lea Bridge near Clapton, which still stands today.
The improvements in tackle and the stocking of rivers and ponds had enabled fishing to become a popular recreation amongst the middle classes during the early nineteenth century. However, it was a subject only occasionally portrayed by artists, for the vast majority of patrons demanded equestrian sporting scenes.

April 1995