Today's fish market
The market is now one of the most technologically-advanced in the world.
In 1971 the fish market moved to New Fish Quay, and in 2011 a £20m regeneration project took place. It is England’s largest fishing port by value, selling over 40 different species including monkfish, scallops and hake. In 2017 £42 million of seafood was handled, due in part to ‘Brixham’s Black Gold Rush’ - exceptionally high levels of cuttlefish were landed and sold at a record price.
Luke Netherton is an auctioneer at the fish market. Born and bred in Brixham, he has worked there for 12 years. His day begins at 4.30am with two ‘shout’ (live) auctions. “There’s a great community feel here, plenty of variety and the chance to learn something new. I love all types of fish, it’s been good to me and it pays my wages!’
On average 40 buyers attend the auction, with many travelling from Cornwall and further afield. A remarkable 90% of the cuttlefish catch is exported to Mediterranean countries.
A web-based auction system will be implemented in 2019 and will replace the current shout auction, enabling buyers in the UK and overseas to bid remotely for the fish. This will help the fish market maintain its position as one of the country’s leading suppliers of high-quality seafood.
Visitors can take a behind-the-scenes early morning tour, which includes seeing the fish auction and breakfast at Rockfish Brixham. It’s a memorable experience.