Why I can’t wait for Series 2 of Whitehouse and Mortimer Gone Fishing

Two middle-aged blokes on a riverbank may not sound like riveting TV, but Tim Gibson reckons it’s the best thing he’s watched in years

By Tim Gibson

I’ve never been fishing in my life. Not properly, anyway. I vaguely recall dangling a rod over the side of a boat off the Devon coast when I was young and catching a few mackerel. But in as much as the skipper used fish-finding devices to locate our haul, baited our rods and took over the minute we had a bite, I don’t think it counts as a genuine angling experience.

    Gone Fishing is the perfect showcase for Mortimer’s charm. His interactions with Paul Whitehouse are unscripted, natural and revealing.  

Which is why I have been surprised by my enthusiasm for Whitehouse and Mortimer Gone Fishing on BBC Two. The first series aired last year and I’ve watched each of the six episodes at least a dozen times. My only disappointment about the imminent screening of Series 2 (the first episode goes on out Friday, 2 August) is that it means the first series has been removed from the BBC iPlayer.

So yes, I’m a fan. It helps that Bob Mortimer is the funniest man alive and by far my favourite comedian. In fact, after listening to his brilliant Desert Island Discs I think he may be my favourite human being. He’s humble, wise, clever and kind. Or at least that’s how he comes across.

Gone Fishing is the perfect showcase for Mortimer’s charm. His interactions with Paul Whitehouse are unscripted, natural and revealing. Both stars show a lot of leg while discussing subjects as diverse as heart surgery (they’ve both had big ops in recent years), fears about mortality and fading celebrity, and family life.

The series is from the same stable as The Trip, Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon’s acerbic restaurant-review series. But it has a kinder heart, is far more authentic. Whereas Coogan and Brydon were playing fictionalised characters who happened to have their names, Whitehouse and Mortimer are very much themselves. Just two old mates, chatting on the riverbank.

None of which sounds like a hugely exciting premise for a TV show. And yet, once you get into it, you’ll find it utterly addictive. It’s not even as if the dialogue is laugh-out-loud funny, although it certainly has its moments. The joy comes from watching two people with an obvious rapport spark off one another, muck around with a complete lack of self-consciousness, and ruminate on life's mysteries.

The scenery is stunning: the show is expertly filmed by Fleabag director Tim Kirkby. If you love the UK’s distinctive rural scenery, you’ll wallow in aerial footage of verdant swards and low-down shots of the sun rising over mist-strewn pastures.

Likewise, if you’re interested in fishing, you’ll no doubt enjoy the occasional asides about species, techniques and locations. Whitehouse is an accomplished and knowledgeable angler. But he wears his expertise lightly, making it accessible even for a fishing ignoramus like me.

But the real strength of the show is its protagonists. They bring warmth, wisdom, wit and humour. I didn’t think my love for Bob Mortimer could get any deeper, but this show confirms that it knows no bounds.

Whitehouse and Mortimer Gone Fishing is an antidote to the stresses of modern life. A show with real heart. And that’s why I am counting down the minutes until 8.00pm on Friday, 2 August.

Published: 2 August 2019

© 2019 Just Recruitment Group Ltd

If you enjoyed this article, you may like: Just testing: Subaru Outback 2.5i SE Premium Lineartronic

You may also enjoy: Why alcohol-free beer may be the perfect summer tipple

Jobs currently available

New job
Care Coordinator
Sector: Healthcare
Location: Colchester
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: BUC-CC
About the role

Back Up Care is recruiting for a Care Coordinator for their Colchester Office to work on the busy Healthcare desk.

Previous experience in scheduling care and support staff would be preferred and a healthcare background is an advantage. You will be extremely confident and well-presented and be able to use your own initiative.

This position will involve working alongside the Office Manager, supporting them with the day to day running of the desk.

The role will include:

  • Registration interviews with potential new candidates, and completion of all necessary compliance documents for successful candidates
  • Booking clients rotas to relevant active care staff, and ensuring that all care staff availability is booked to full potential
  • Service calls to clients that are using service meetings to ensure current clients’ needs are being met by Back Up Care
  • Telephone calls to prospect clients
  • Email and Mailers sent to prospect clients
  • Source leads for possible new business
  • Sales calls to obtain new business
  • Sales meetings to obtain new business
  • Ensure specialist software is updated with carer and client information and all bookings are entered onto the system
  • General administration duties
  • On-call rota duties

This requires you to work at an extremely fast pace, placing candidates into both temporary and permanent placements to match their qualifications, skills and experience.

There is a large amount of telephone calls liaison with candidates and clients, therefore excellent clear communicational skills are a must and excellent interpersonal skills are essential.

Other essential skills are:

  • An ability to work as part of a team and as a lone worker
  • A proven ability of effective time management and organisational skills
  • Excellent administrational skills are vital and attention to detail ensuring all candidates are compliant prior to assignment
  • Due to the requirements of the role, a driving licence and access to a vehicle for work purposes is essential

Holiday entitlement:

28 days holiday including public holidays, increasing to 33 days after 2-year service.

If you wish to apply for this role, please forward your CV to emma.brown@back-upcare.co.uk

Read more
New job
QA Manager
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: Discussed on application
Location: Saffron Walden
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910873
About the role

Our client is seeking an experienced Quality Assurance Manager to join them on a permanent, full-time basis. This opportunity offers stability, longevity and professional development.

Reporting directly to the MD, the Quality Assurance Manager will be responsible for:

  • Maintaining and improving the Company's Quality Management System and ensure internal compliance
  • Working with all departments to ensure their procedures are being followed and to improve their internal and cross-functional processes and procedures
  • Ensure that the quality of current and newly introduced products is compliant and traceable
  • Coordinate Quality activities with all over departments
  • Develop and improve quality relationships with all customers of the Company
  • Responsible for all Quality activities and personnel in the Quality Department for the Company
  • Provide strong leadership in the day-to-day operations of the Quality department and mentor the members of the team
  • Establish performance goals for all departmental employees and monitor performance on a continual basis
  • Oversee all hiring, appraisal, training and discipline of Quality personnel
  • Member of the Company's Management team
  • Produce the Quality element of the company's annual Budget
  • Formulate the departmental strategy aligned to the overall Company strategy
  • Embed a Continuous Improvement culture within the Quality Dept and contribute to the Continuous Improvement programme across the site


  • HND or equivalent qualification in Engineering or a related technical field required
  • Minimum 5 years experience in a Manufacturing environment
  • Ability to articulate (verbally and in writing), defend and negotiate Quality expectations with internal and external customers at all levels of management
  • Good interpersonal skills with the ability to guide and educate/train at all levels
Read more
New job
Customer Service Administrator
Sector: Customer Service
Salary: £22,000 per annum
Location: Halstead
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910871
About the role

Just Recruitment is delighted to be supporting a well-regarded organisation at the forefront of its sector that is looking to add a Customer Service Administrator to its team, due to growth – based on the outskirts of Halstead.

The main purpose of the role is to service current and prospective customers by receiving and processing orders, enquiries and general information in a timely and courteous manner.

Key tasks include:

  • Answering incoming calls, giving product information, lead times, dealing with general enquiries and queries, redirecting calls to relevant departments
  • Raising and inputting orders and proforma invoices
  • Raising quotations
  • Amending orders, as required
  • Scanning documentation
  • Liaising with Areas Sales Managers and responding to their requests
  • Arranging couriers and/or carriers as required
  • Any general office associated duties

Key requirements for the role:

  • Excellent computer skills
  • Good eye for detail
  • The ability to work well under pressure
  • Courteous

Previous experience requirements:

  • Previous Customer Service Administrative experience gained within an office environment
  • Excellent telephone manner with the ability to communicate at all levels
  • High level of attention to detail and accuracy
  • Good working knowledge of Microsoft Office and experience of in-house systems
  • Ability to multi-task and prioritise own workload
  • Exceptional communication skills, both written and verbal
  • Understanding of the importance of data protection and adherence to the process

Offering free parking and an excellent working environment, this is a great opportunity to join a growing team.

Working Monday to Friday 37.5 hours per week - offering a competitive salary and company benefits.

Read more
New job
Production Operative
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: £8.91 per hour
Location: Needham Market
Role: Full Time
Contract: Temporary
Job ref: 910811
About the role

Want to work in a safe, clean environment?
And have the possibility of ongoing work?

Just Recruitment is recruiting for a Temporary Production Operative to be based in Needham Market.

Duties include:

  • Ensure all final and completed products are packed to the customer specifications                               
  • Informing Line Leaders of defects found in the products
  • Keep machines supplied with packing materials and labels
  • Assist the Line Leaders with handovers and changeovers
  • Responsible for general cleanliness of the production area and removal of production and general waste
  • Check products on the line for quality and defects
  • Basic production duties carried out in a fast-paced environment

Working hours:

8.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday

Read more