Beyond Trawlertown

BookBeyond Trawlertown

Beyond Trawlertown

Memory, Life and Legacy in the Wake of the Cod Wars

Studies in Port and Maritime History, 2


December 14th, 2021

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Beyond Trawlertown takes a journey through the British distant-water fishery and its port-city connections in an era of disruption. In 1976, defeat in the Anglo-Icelandic Cod Wars saw the British trawling fleet excluded from their traditional hunting grounds. Combining with wider global factors, the move brought an end to long-established trawling practices, with profound social, economic and cultural repercussions. Through a case study of the port of Hull, oral history and archival research explore the challenges, responses and legacy of rapid change. Although the emphasis is on Hull, this is far from a local history. Hull’s position among the world leading distant-water pioneers gives the story international significance. Focusing on memory, lived experience and place, the book goes beyond established narratives. Personal acts of remembering offer cultural perspectives on how global events and marine policy impact upon the seafaring communities that live with the consequences. The Cod Wars signaled an end, yet amid the disruption there were also new beginnings. And in the wake of an active fishery, the rhythms of the past continue to resonate in the negotiation of fishing heritage within the contemporary city. Through the convergence of time, place and memory, this holistic narrative of interweaving stories reveals the intricacies of our human interaction with the marine environment and the aftermath when its threads are broken.

'This is a fine piece of work, based on extensive archival and oral history research, which makes an important and original contribution.' 
Dr Graeme Milne, University of Liverpool

Author Information

Jo Byrne is an Honorary Research Fellow at the Blaydes Maritime Centre, University of Hull.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Section TitlePagePrice
List of Maps9
List of Figures11
Glossary of Fishing and Nautical Terms15
Glossary of Vernacular Terms18
Preface: Starting the Journey19
1: Introduction25
Memory: Remembering Time and Place34
2: Trawling Lives and Culture – A Portrait up to 197641
The Trawling Port of Hull41
A Trawling Life51
Freezer Technology67
The Freezer Generation70
3: A New Fishing World Order77
Losing the Battle86
Unprepared for the Future90
Old Grounds with New Quotas94
4: Living through the Aftermath101
Ships to Scrap and Ships for Sale101
Laying Off and Staying On107
The Fish Trades: Less Cause for Concern116
5: New Horizons121
The Search for Alternatives123
Developing the Falklands: A New British Fishery149
A Place in the World: Importing Fish into Hull153
New Lives156
1983 and the Last Firms Standing163
6: The Life and Death of Trawlertown167
Coming into Port168
Stepping into Trawlertown171
Demolition and Development182
Twice Disrupted193
The Death of Trawlertown198
7: Remembrance201
The Pull of the Past: An Epilogue201
Understanding Memory and Place202
Post-industrial Acts of Forgetting206
The Rise of ‘Heritage from Below’211
The Messiness of Remembering233
The Right Place: A Prologue235
8: Beyond Trawlertown237
Appendix 1243
Appendix 2247
Bibliography of Referenced Sources249