Yes Paul, that's the type of rod that describes an Avon. They mostly have two top sections, one which is usually 1?, 1? or 1? T.C. and another section which can take a quiver tip. The first top can be used when float fishing or when using a hanger / swinger indicator with or without a bite alarm.
the advantage is you buy one rod and can get away with using it for just about everything.
float fishing on rivers or still waters, though not as good as a dedicated float rod they do the job.
light to medium feeder fishing they quiver sections cope admirably.
even bolt rigged and sitting on a bite alarm for carp to 20lb they will cope with it and land you your fish,
though i've got to admit when i landed my 19lb carp on mine things did get troublesome at times. and when i hooked that 30 odd pound carp while tench fishing i didn't have a chance.
Jason has said just about all the reasons to use ths type of rod. I have two and use one on a bite alarm as described earlier as a sleeper rod with a large bait for any larger fish in the swim and use the other in another part of the swim with a leger weight or feeder. Sometimes I'll set up both on the alarm set ups so I can maximise the baited area by casting to either side of the bed of freebies. These rods are very versatile and can cope with most species and conditions it's an excellent type of all rounder rod.
The John Wilson Avon Quiver System (they are 1?lb tc on the Avon section, and can be fished at either 11 or 13 feet by adding / removing a dolly section above the handle, they also come with a quiver section and three tips) is a nice rod, I got one for my son and he loves it. It's a little soft compaired with my rods which are Pro Performance Titanium Specialists. I love these, but if I could go back, I'd get myself a couple of the Wilson rods. He also has a Barbel version at out (1?lb T.C I think), so that may suit you if you want to go for bigger species.
The Ron Thompson Panther is not bad if you want a cheap starter rod. The only things I didn't like were the screw fitting for the reel which is a small and tends to be tight on the thread, and the legs of the eyes are a little short, causing the wet line to touch the rod, causing it not to run freely when trotting. Apart from that, it had no problem handling decent chub on the quiver and is light enough to hold all day.
Thanks chaps- I've only been fishing for a year so relatively new to the sport, and so far I've stuck to local commercial stillwaters, but I'm thinking os trying my local river "The Rother" at the Yorkshire/Derbyshire border bit, so it sound as though the JW would be a decent rod for the job. By the way anyone know if that strecth of the "Rother" is worth fishing?