About us

Bruce & Walker is a family business.  It began in the 1950s as B James & Son, with Mr Jim Bruce and his father,  James Bruce Snr , in a fishing tackle shop in Ealing, London.  Mr Bruce Snr was a rod maker of split cane rods and was renowned for his attention to detail.  The Bruce family moved to the small village of Upwood and met the local engineer and businessman,  Ken Walker.  All the machinery and equipment in the workshop of B James & Son was made by Ken Walker for every individual, specific purpose.  A lifelong friendship and understanding was forged between Jim and Ken, and Bruce & Walker was formed in January 1959.  It was soon to be the advent of carbon fibre and an exciting time in fishing rod manufacturing.

In 1983 Ken’s daughter, Kay,  and son-in-law, Brian Potter, joined the family business.  Both keen fishers, Brian brought practical skills and a perfectionist streak in keeping with the company ethos.   After decades working successfully together in both fibre glass and carbon fibre, Jim Bruce retired in 1995.  Sadly, he passed away in 2000.  Ken Walker continued at the helm until his 75th year and then “retired”.   He continued to pop into the workshop every day for the next  10 years.  Sadly, he too passed away in 2014 aged 88 years.

 Kay had been raised with a fishing rod in one hand and a 12 bore in the other. Brian and Kay married in 1980.   Brian has a natural, easy  casting ability and all the skills required for the salmon rivers, catching his first ever salmon within his first hour of fishing.  Brian is also a very good shot.   Both Brian and Kay are loyal advocates of all rural country sports.

Brian learnt every stage of hand making fishing rods under the tutilege of both Jim and Ken.  There isn’t a single stage of the process he hasn’t done himself.  Today he still hand fits and hand tests every single Bruce & Walker rod.  His perfectionist streak and attention to detail is unsurpassed.  He designs every  Bruce & Walker rod in the current range, and designs and builds many other rods under different names for different customers.  Under Ken’s wing,  Brian met all the ghillies on the Scottish salmon rivers and tries to visit them as often as he can, whilst balancing the day to day running of the business.  Kay and Brian both like a hands on approach with Bruce & Walker and offer a very warm welcome to visitors.    Every Bruce & Walker rod is designed and made, from start to finish, in the village of Upwood, England.  The third generation is as passionate about supporting British manufacturing,  as their predecessors.  We hope Jim and Ken are smiling broadly from that perfect salmon river in the sky!

Historical Product Information

File Size
Classic Angling Magazine Article - Page 1 (Oct 2000) 532.08 KB
Classic Angling Magazine Article - Page 2 (Oct 2000) 620.56 KB
Classic Angling Magazine Article - Page 3 (Oct 2000) 626.33 KB
Classic Angling Magazine Article - Page 4 (Oct 2000) 532.85 KB
CTM Series 313.08 KB
Geoff Bibby Match Rods (Circa 1990) 590.35 KB
Loch, Loch LLV, Border and Orthodox 370.57 KB
Major, The Expert (Salmon Rod), Cordon Bleu, Silver Stream, Spring Spinner 369.35 KB
MkIV Avon including Perfection, Loch Lomond and Trotter 312.26 KB
New Flyer Plus and Extant Series 320.68 KB
The Companion, True Brook, Highlander and Cairngorm 281.12 KB
Whisperer 264.18 KB
XL Range 495.88 KB