Friday, 20 July 2007
East Fife Fisher-folk
Recollections of East Fife Fisher-folk. During the early part of the twentieth century, fishing still formed one of the main industries in this famous corner of Fife. Belle Patrick spent her first thirty years in and around Anstruther, and in the mid 1960s wrote this memoir in order to put on record the fishing way of life, believing it was ‘so individual, so independent, so different from the present-day standardised pattern of life that it deserve[d] to be put on record’. She describes how the fishing year began shortly after the New Year, as soon as the men had sobered up after Hogmanay, with the ‘winter herring’, and goes on to recount the arrival of the fish-buyers from all over the country.
Like a succession of vivid snapshots, this book is a charming yet insightful memoir of a way of life now gone forever. From it emerges a detailed picture of fisherfolk and fishing: their boats, methods of fishing, life and customs. The result is a valuable record of what was a central part of Scotland’s fishing industry.
It is enhanced with a number of photographs of fishing life in the east Neuk of Fife in the early part of the twentieth century. Recollections of East Fife Fisher-folk.