Caught by the River


15th February 2010

These two letters were gratefully received by us last week. Thank you gentlemen, it means a lot.
Andy, I’ll be picking your brain about Richard Boston. We have recently bought a set of Vole magazines but I had no previous knowledge of Richard Boston. He sounds like our kind of guy.

I really love your web-site and everything associated with it – an oasis of
sanity and real pleasure. Thank you for introducing me to The Country
Bizarre as well – as a music fanzine editor in the early 70s (Fat Angel and
then Zigzag) I can appreciate the love and care that went into its making. I
wish now that I’d come across it at the time. I did buy every issue of Vole
magazine though, edited by the late, great Richard Boston who I know would
have have thoroughly approved of what you are doing. I’m sure you know of
Richard Boston’s work – he almost single-handedly brought the Campaign For
Real Ale to the attenion of a wider public through his articles in The
Guardian. I have a lot of his very amusing Guardian articles in scrapbook!
Anyway, please keep doing what you do – it’s much needed.
All The Best
Andy Childs

It’s rare that I write to periodicals, whether they ply their content in
print or online, but I couldn’t help myself this morning.
It appears I am in that tricky demographic: mid-30s and going through a
major transition of tastes and opinion.
Radio One fell out of favour many moons ago.
I can still enjoy Radcliffe and Maconie’s show in Two, while Six Music
gets a look in between radios Three and Four.
The Fourth Programme wins in the morning, too… as TV breakfast news,
irrespective of channel, turns my stomach.

I have a similar challenge in the newsagents about to board a train.
I may buy a newspaper, but ‘men’s lifestyle’ titles don’t speak to
me. Overpriced overcoats, ‘turbo active’ skin treatments and the drive
for a washboard abdomen seem to rule this sector.

What about specialist titles? I am a fan of the velo and a follower of
Izaak, but cycling mags rarely suit… As for fishing, forget it.

Forgive me this lengthy scene-setter, but it brings me to Caught by the
River. I have, once again, my ‘lifestyle magazine’.

Nowhere can I find enthusiasm for Four Tet’s new album seamlessly running
alongside ruminations on Black Sheep beer and evocative tales of crisp
mornings by the riverside.

For my thrity-sixth birthday, I was lucky enough to receive your book, which
now sits on my bedside table. I’m reading it slowly, savouring every
At a time when it’s increasingly difficult to go fishing and partake in
all those things that make life rich and rewarding, I have my tonic.
As I strive for the right work-life balance, you help me fish my thoughts
and prompt daily travels through memory and imagination.

For all this, gents, my deepest thanks.

Matt Hobley