Set on the Ribble Estuary, ShrimpTown is an intimate portrait of a family of shrimpers as they try to make a living in a working class industry being washed away by changing tastes and mounting legislation. 

Through the numbingly cold early morning starts and the long hours shilling into the night for scant rewards, the family’s humour binds them together, but it’s no match for the hardships of a life tied to the tides. As the estuary silts up and demand for shrimp declines, the next generation have stark choices ahead. Nineteen year old shiller, Jeanie Rowe, knows that better than anyone. Her life has been mapped out for her since the day she was born and dreams come second to family loyalty. So what will it take for her to swim against the shoal? And is it worth the risk?

Inspired by real life stories and memories, ShrimpTown is a hymn to the Lytham of yesteryear and its tightknit community of fishermen and women.

A significant piece of social history, it explores the body wrecking demands of a largely forgotten industry that helped to shape the fabric and development of Britain’s North West coastline, offering an insight into the waning fortunes of Lytham’s infamous shrimping industry during the late 1950’s and a glimpse into a way of life now far removed from the modern existence of today’s Lytham residents. 

Details of our research and work to date on ShrimpTown will be released in January 2017. In the meantime, if you would like to share your story of living or working in Lytham or St. Anne’s shrimping industry, please get in touch with Alex O’Toole by calling 07854 951266 or emailing alex@fablearts.org.uk


Image Credit: Muriel Hardman

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