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TITLE
Packing the kippers
EXTERNAL ID
GB1796_SINCLAIR_FISHERGIRLS_05
DATE OF RECORDING
1984
PERIOD
1980s
CREATOR
unknown
SOURCE
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
ASSET ID
1944
KEYWORDS
fisher girls
fisher lassies
fishwives
kippers
kippering
market
markets
audio

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Women played an important role in the fishing industry in Scotland; some were employed to bait lines but the majority worked at gutting and curing the catches. When the herring summer season finished at home many fisher lassies travelled down south to catch the autumn herring season in fishing ports like Great Yarmouth or Lowestoft. In this audio extract, a former Caithness fisher lassie recalls her 'kipperin' days. Her name is Chrissie Smith and she was recorded at Dalmore House Eventide Home (Alness) in 1984 as part of reminiscence classes run by the Workers Educational Association.

'An in the mornin then, we used'll go out - five o'clock in e mornin - and strip the kill. An Ah used to be up on e plank again, an handin it doon and takin it, puttin it on e rack. Then there was sometimes five, sometimes four of us, went out in e mornings and every person had their own place till stand at, and then they called it kipper boxes, d'ye know? And when we put the herrin together like that wi the heads - that way - four, an then we put them together that way, till ye fill the box. Then ye put the lid on. Well, when you packed that kippers in this box, when it was fill, there was a person weighin it - so many stone - and ye put it on that. There's another person waitin, when they lifted it off, ye put the lid on. Then it was put off then early in the mornin, about seven o'clock, to catch the train till Billingsgate, an that was the kippers'

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Packing the kippers

1980s

fisher girls; fisher lassies; fishwives; kippers; kippering; market; markets; audio

Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

Bill Sinclair Audio: Fisher Lassies

Women played an important role in the fishing industry in Scotland; some were employed to bait lines but the majority worked at gutting and curing the catches. When the herring summer season finished at home many fisher lassies travelled down south to catch the autumn herring season in fishing ports like Great Yarmouth or Lowestoft. In this audio extract, a former Caithness fisher lassie recalls her 'kipperin' days. Her name is Chrissie Smith and she was recorded at Dalmore House Eventide Home (Alness) in 1984 as part of reminiscence classes run by the Workers Educational Association.<br /> <br /> 'An in the mornin then, we used'll go out - five o'clock in e mornin - and strip the kill. An Ah used to be up on e plank again, an handin it doon and takin it, puttin it on e rack. Then there was sometimes five, sometimes four of us, went out in e mornings and every person had their own place till stand at, and then they called it kipper boxes, d'ye know? And when we put the herrin together like that wi the heads - that way - four, an then we put them together that way, till ye fill the box. Then ye put the lid on. Well, when you packed that kippers in this box, when it was fill, there was a person weighin it - so many stone - and ye put it on that. There's another person waitin, when they lifted it off, ye put the lid on. Then it was put off then early in the mornin, about seven o'clock, to catch the train till Billingsgate, an that was the kippers'