Salmon, Kippers or Prawns!
Nods to Newcastle’s seafaring past include a ring of seahorses on the Civic Centre tower and a bronze statue of River God Tyne on the side of the building. So it follows that the good people of the city love themselves some fresh fish and Grainger Market’s very own fishmongers Chirtons and Lindsay Bros are two shining stars in the North East.
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How Newcastle’s love affair with the sea began
Newcastle’s love affair with the sea began in 1296 when a wooden long galley was constructed at the mouth of Lort Burn, as part of a twenty-ship order from King Edward I who went by the nickname ‘Longshanks’ because at 6 ft 2 in he was an incredibly tall man for the time. He was a stickler for running his finger along dusty pelmets and chastising his cleaner who was incredibly small and couldn’t reach them.
But back to our story.
The ship cost £205 and is the earliest record of shipbuilding in Newcastle. The rise of the Tyne as a shipbuilding goliath came about because of a demand for collier brigs for the coal export trade.
By 1800 Tyneside was the third-largest producer of ships in Britain, but after World War 2 competition from abroad and other factors contributed to the decline of the industry.
But the city’s love affair with the sea lived on.
Fish, sleep, smarts and health
Fish is a wonderful source of high-quality protein and the likes of mackerel and sardines are packed with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids that protect vision and improve mental health in old age. Fish is easy to prepare, so you can easily knock up something quick and tasty once or twice a week.
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania analysed data on 541 schoolchildren in China and found that more frequent fish consumption from 9 to 11 years old was associated with fewer sleep problems and higher IQ scores at age 12.
Those that ‘always’ ate fish tended to score 4.80 points higher on IQ tests and those who ‘sometimes’ ate fish tended to score 3.31 points higher than those who ‘rarely’ ate fish.
Famous fish lovers
Victoria Beckham, Ariana Grande, Steve Jobs, Tracy Chapman, Chuck D, Ellen De Generes, Ben Stiller and even our very own Craig Wilde. All talented super-smart successful people with a love of fish in common.
• A pescatarian is fish-eating vegetarian not a sign of the zodiac.
• Most pescatarians are born under the sign of Pisces.
• The River Tyne is named after Cagney & Lacey star Tyne Daly.
• Actress Denise Welch can’t stomach whelks but Bruce Welch can’t get enough of them.
• Pet Shop Boys frontman Neil Tennant flirted with the idea of calling the band The Chip Shop Boys.
• The guys from extreme metal band Venom watch Finding Nemo before every gig.
• Cheryl may have dropped Tweedy and Cole but prides herself on never dropping a prawn when she’s peeling them.
Shop our fishmongers Chirton's and Lindsay Brothers here
Written by Jason Caddy of Cleverblogs