Book review - Memories of the Yorkshire Fishing Industry
Sean Meeghan looks at a book which is not strictly ‘angling’ related but which may be of interest to anyone with a love of history and the fishing industry.
The publishers say:
The heyday of the Yorkshire fishing industry came between the 1840s and the 1960s. During this time small fishing villages expanded and whole families were involved in the business as a way of life. For every man out at sea, it was said, there would be 20 men and women working on land preparing and selling the catch.
At Hull, trawlers would dock on the evening tide and unloading would be in full swing by 2 a.m. At seven o'clock dockside auctions began amid the chaos of bustling people. Each buyer's office had lorries or even railway wagons parked up at the rear ready to receive the catch which would average 1,000 tons of fish landed per day.
Yorkshire's other fishing ports included Whitby, Staithes, Robin Hood's Bay, Flamborough, Scarborough, Filey and Bridlington. The story of Yorkshire's fishing industry is told here through interviews and first-hand accounts from those who were a part of it at its height. Its decline after the controversial Cod Wars of the 1970s left much bitterness along the Yorkshire coast.
Ron Freethy, a well known local journalist and broadcaster, has combined local memories with well-researched stories and contemporary photographs to record a way of life before it disappears forever.
A5 softcover (128 pages)
It’s fishing Jim, but not as we know it!
This well written little book is more a social history of the resorts of the Yorkshire coast than a history of the fishing industry itself. It tells the history of the towns from Staithes down to Hull, often told from the point of view of the people who worked there as they recount tales from family history or from their own experiences. The final chapters tell the tale of the cod war with Iceland, the death of the deep water fishing industry and the subsequent decline of the port of Hull.
Whilst perhaps not of great relevance to recreational fishers, it makes an interesting read for those who visit the Yorkshire coast and would like to know more about its towns and villages.
I enjoyed it.
Memories of the Yorkshire Fishing Industry is published by Countryside Books with a cover price of £9.95 and it is available from all good booksellers, or via the Countryside Books website HERE at an online discounted price of £7.96
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