The Rise and Fall of the East Anglian Herring

They were known as the Silver Darlings and for centuries the herring provided a way of life for the ports which fished the North Sea. Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft were perfectly placed to exploit the harvest of the sea once the railways made it possible to supply the cities with all the fish they required. For decades entire communities thrived during the herring season, accepting the hard work and danger which came with them. Almost as famous as the crews themselves were the Scottish fisher girls who followed the shoals and produced barrels of salted herring, kippers and bloaters which were loved around the world. But in time the herring stocks were exhausted and now only photographs give us an idea of the industry at its prime.