The Skipper and Crewman

John Gilson, SkipperJohn Gilson is a well respected fisherman in the Thames estuary and English Channel.

He started fishing at the age of 15, coming from a long line of Thames fishermen from Southend-on-Sea. He skippered his first trawler at the age of 18, working winters scalloping out of Rye and trawling in the Thames Estuary for the remainder of the year.

For the last 40 years he has worked out of Whitstable, initially pair fishing for cod, eels, sprats and herrings and then moving into the shellfish business. With his brother, and in latter years also with his son, he built up a very successful cockle fishing and processing plant under the name of Cardium Shellfish.

John sold the business in June 2011 and this is a new venture for him. With his extensive knowledge of the area, passion for the sea and a lifetime’s experience John has much to offer those looking for a good day’s fishing, a pleasure trip or those wanting commercial work undertaken.

As required by the Marine Coastguard Agency (MCA) he has the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Yachtmaster's offshore certificate with a commercial endorsement and the Professional Practices and Responsibilities certificate.  He also has up-to-date training in first aid and sea survival.



Dave Robinson has been a keen sea angler, fishing from boat and shore for over 40 years and has an extensive knowledge of catching all species of sea fish from the Kent coast. His hobby is fishing including big game fishing. Dave is the ideal crewman to have aboard having tutored and ghillied fly fisherman in competitions and anglers will be well looked after.