In Trondheim, where I used to live before coming to England, sometimes I bought fish directly off the boat. The fish was fresh and cheaper than the supermarket. I am interested to know if it is possible to do the same in England. Is it common to buy fresh fish off the boat in England?

Note: I asked the same question in Expatriates.SE, but was advised to ask here instead.

  • 1
    It's certainly not common, because most people in England have a strong bias towards supermarket ready meals, but that doesn't mean it's impossible. What part of England are you in? Mar 31, 2014 at 8:53
  • I live in Plymouth. I do see fishing boats at the harbour, but have never seen any fishermen nor fish on the boats.
    – adipro
    Mar 31, 2014 at 15:09
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    For Plymouth specifically, there is a fish market right there on the harbour that sells retail as well as wholesale: suttonharbourfisheries.co.uk/buying-seafood
    – Vicky
    Mar 31, 2014 at 15:32
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    Ethically, you should not be able to buy fish directly off a boat in any country. Most seas are way overfished, and local governments should be implementing a quota system to control this. This does generally require centralised independent tallies
    – TFD
    Jun 12, 2014 at 8:03
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    @TFD nonsense. The way things work boats tally up their catch and present the numbers, just like companies across the world present their income numbers to tax agencies. Occasionally there'll be spot inspections to test whether there's fraud going on of course.
    – jwenting
    Jun 13, 2014 at 7:26

2 Answers 2


People don't become fishermen in the UK to get rich. We simply don't eat enough variety of fish for them to sell it in person. The way they make the most money is wholesaling it for export to the rest of the EU.

That said, apart from possibly Yarmouth you are in one of the best areas in the country where you might get this service. Here's one based around Cornwall:


They put posters up when they will be heading out.

For more suggestions you might consider a Facebook group or similar for your town?


To answer your question: at present it is not common to buy fish directly from the boat in England. However, you could try Plymouth Fish Market - where you can buy from Moby Nicks, or Rex Downs.

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