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Last Fisherman

Meet Norman Grant, Aberdeenshire’s last line fisherman, in this colourful, moving documentary from 1958 about a hard-working man and his everyday toils in a dying industry.

Amateur film 1958 17 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for Scotland's Moving Image Archive


Colourful, moving documentary produced by the award winning Clansman Films in 1958 charting a day in the life of Norman Grant, Aberdeenshire's last line fisherman. Experience a taste of the tough, often solitary life of a lone fisherman in a dying industry. Join Norman as he digs for bait, prepares and sets his lines, hauls his catch, and readies it for market. The last bastion of a dying industry, Norman is justifiably honoured in this touching portrait.

Long-lining is a labor-intensive fishing practice whereby bait is attached to a number of hooks, by hand, spanning a length of line. In Scotland, it has been widely abandoned due to the advent of higher yielding trawling and the high level of incidental catch (i.e. gulls and sharks) that it causes. This film is significant as it represents the death of commercial long-lining in Scotland. Clansman Films was formed in 1962 by amateur cine enthusiast Ron Miller. They were an ambitious club, who met on an ad hoc basis to discuss and plan relatively large scale productions for Amateur Cine World, with an emphasis on documentaries. Its members were award winning visionaries whose style is reflected in this film.