The only reason to get me out of bed at 4am on a Saturday would be to catch a plane to some exotic destination, or to watch a ‘you need to experience this’ kind of sunrise. This morning however I managed to wake up at that same time, get dressed and cross the city for….a fish market. Oh yeah, the smell of fish before sunrise. Not the best part of this experience I would say, but an interesting experience nonetheless.
Billingsgate Fish Market (next to Canary Wharf) is Britain’s largest fish market, with 25.000 tonnes of fish and fish products being sold every year. Many London chefs go here to get their fish. And apparently to see fish traders at their best, you need to catch them early. The things I do for this blog…
Even though the city was still fast asleep (the tube wasn’t even running yet), I was surprised to see how many people were already at the fish market. Clearly, they weren’t kidding when they said you need to be there early.
The market’s been in its current location since 1982, but its history goes back to the sixteenth century when it started to focus exclusively on fish trade. There’s nothing glamorous about the place itself. It’s basically a large trading hall where men in white coats are selling their products. But it was fun to see their enthusiasm, and what people were buying. And whatever type of fish you’re looking for, I’m sure you will find it here.
I love eating fish, but for me it was too early to get me exited about buying some. So I just took pictures instead. Maybe I’ll have some fish tonight… But first I need a nap.