Barbel, Salmon and Eels, The History of Fishing in Chiswick
A talk by James Wisdom at Chiswick Pier House
What does a barbel taste like? Which fish smells of cucumber? How would you keep fish fresh before refrigerators were invented? Who were Chiswick’s fishermen, and where did they live?
James Wisdom, who chairs both the Brentford & Chiswick Local History Society and the Thames Explorer Trust, will be revealing all about fishing in Chiswick in the past.
James will use his recent research to reveal the kinds of fish that were caught, the traps and nets that were used and where the fisherman were permitted to operate. He will look at the changes in fishing over the centuries and the way pollution in the early years of Victoria’s reign began to wipe out the fish stocks in the river.
From the middle ages until the 1830s, fishing was a major part of Chiswick’s economy. Fish could be both a luxury food and a basic one, and religious rules required fish to be eaten on Fridays instead of meat. Boats, nets and traps required considerable investment and the process of fishing depended upon skill, strength and a real knowledge of the river.
The Chiswick Pier Trust are hosting the talk, at 7.30pm on Thursday March 5 at the Pier House, Corney Reach, W4. Doors open at 7pm and the event will start at 7.30pm. Free to Chiswick Pier Trust Members (membership £5), £3 to non-members.
Chiswick Pier and Chiswick Pier House are at the end of Corney Road and Edensor Road, Chiswick, W4 2UG. The talk is part of a series organised by the Chiswick Pier Trust, a charity that puts people in touch with the River Thames.
For further details on events at the Pier and how to get there, contact the Chiswick Pier Trust 020 8742 2713 or log on at www.chiswickpier.org.uk .
February 16, 2010