Tollbooth Floodplain is probably the world's most famous master of the underwater culinary arts. His 'Lamb Casserole at Forty Fathoms' is now - according to the Jacques Cousteau Aquatic Gastronomy Institute - one of the most common dishes served at sub-aqua dinner parties in the whole of Western Europe.
By late 2007, Cookery programmes had reached an all-time low on British television with barely two or three cookery programmes per evening on each of the four major terrestrial channels. In desperation, fearing that - if the supply of new culinary gimmicks dried up - they would be forced into making really worthwhile television programmes instead - the producers began to look around for a new 'TV Chef'.
After many, many, expense-account lunches in as many London restaurants as they could find, the Cookery programme producers were trying to build up the necessary courage to venture outside London when - after a particularly well-researched lunch, in late spring 2008 - one of their researchers accidentally fell into the Thames.
After all the producers (well, the heterosexual ones) had given her the kiss of life (some taking several attempts), the researcher pointed out that she had fell into the river just above 'The Bends', London's first underwater restaurant. The Bends was the only London restaurant they had - as yet - not sampled, as scuba gear had not - at that time - become the 'must-have' urban fashion accessory it has since become as sub-aqua dining has grown in popularity.
Of course, everyone must now know how Floodplain took the then moribund culinary world by storm with his 'Ratatouille in a Puddle', first served to those TV executives and researchers at 'The Bends'. From that point onward, sub-aqua dining became almost de-rigueur for the British capital's gourmands. Then, after the success of Floodplain's debut cookery series the idea of underwater dining soon spread until every town with a river, lake or canal nearby had at least one sub-aqua restaurant of its own.
Nowadays, of course, a night out seems incomplete without donning the scuba gear to sample such culinary wonders as 'Moistened Stroganoff', 'Damp-Course Lasagne', 'Saturated Pork in Flippers' and other such delights. For all of these gastronomic joys we have to thank one man - Tollbooth Floodplain - for the sheer genius of his culinary vision.