It was a Tradition…..


” Welcome Home”

I was idly listening to a programme on the Radio (now there is a novelty these days).  There was a discussion about traditions…but listening to the debate I began to think that a great many of these so called traditions were more the habit of necessity.

I then recalled a rather emotive sculpture on the sea wall at Fleetwood.  Fleetwood was once one of our major Fishing Ports. Trawlers would head off to deep North Atlantic waters in all weather all year round.

It was of course in the days before Radio Telephones and Satellite Communication, what radio contact there was could not be relied upon and range limited. As boats were at sea for some time, often the only news was from one returning boat relaying news of those they had seen.

As the return date was not to a timetable and as weather conditions in the northern water were often severe, it proved an anxious wait for the families at home.   As each high tide approached  there would often be a line of ‘Fisher Wives” watching anxiously till they recognised a familiar vessel returning to port.

This Bronze Sculpture was erected as a tribute to those left at home.  It is the work of artist Anita Lafford is near life size and stands in the very spot that many families gathered to wave and shout “Welcome Home”

It is also perhaps quite fitting that much of the money for this Sculpture was provided by the very appropriately named local Sweet Company

Fishermans Friends

5th July

(C) David Oakes 2016




3 thoughts on “It was a Tradition…..

    • I am old enough to remember this tradition of waiting for the return of Fishing vessels, not just at Fleetwood but other fishing ports that used to cling to our coastline. The groups of wives all waiting for high tide then gradually moving away as the tide fell and the hope for that day faded. It was a tough life for those at sea and those left at home.

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