The twilight of the salmon fishing industry in the River Severn will be documented in a new book.

An ancient local industry which survived for hundreds of years, the practise is now virtually extinct. Author Nick Large mainly gathered his information during the 1960s, 70s and 80s, not realising at the time that he was recording the end of commercial salmon fishing in the river.

He taught geography at Thornbury Grammar School and then at Marlwood School and hunting the treasures yielded by the banks of the Severn was a natural extension of his professional life.

Nick made important collections of fossils and geology which are now lodged in the Museum of Wales, Bristol Museum and the Natural History Museum.

When Nick took up photography his interest in the fishermen was ignited. Photographing the fishermen at their work led to conversations with them which then developed into a thorough study of the industry.

Nick searched the Severn from the estuary in the south to Gloucester in the north and across the river to the west. He observed the fishermen and their methods, photographed them and chronicled their work. Their knowledge of the tides, the dangers they faced and the way the weather conditions affected their catch were all documented.

After he retired Nick presented exhibitions and wrote articles about fishing. This book, entitled The Glorious Uncertainty: Salmon Fishing in the River Severn, will be the first time that his knowledge has been published in its entirety.

Sadly, Nick died as the book was coming to its fruition. Thornbury & District Museum have pieced the final stages together and it can now be published.

The book will be launched at 7.30pm on Monday, March 9 at Thornbury Baptist Church. Entry is free and volunteers from the museum will talk about the book and how they were able to complete it following Nick’s death.

It will be available on the night for £20 and thereafter from Thornbury & District Museum.

The museum is also currently displaying an exhibition of photographs from the 1980s which were mainly collated by Nick Large.