Saxonia is equipped with a range of authentic hand-operated fishing gear - oyster
dredges, beam trawls, shrimp trawls and herring drift-nets.
Come out on one of our fishing days to experience at first-hand the fishing techniques
used over 100 years ago.
You can keep all fish caught - shrimps are cooked and eaten on board.
The type of gear used depends on the time of year and the fishery.. Generally oysters
and herring-drifting in winter and trawling in summer.
Spratts are no longer fished from Brightlingsea but herring, sole, cod, whiting,
skate, lobster, shrimp and oysters and mussels can all be found.
Oyster dredging - West Mersea
The Mayor of Colchester on board Saxonia to open the Colne oyster fishery.
Saxonia - 1953 off Southend Pier with a deck full of whitebait.
Saxonia weighs 20 tons - there are no winches or modern aids - everything is done
by hand the traditional way.
Come and learn some of the tricks, techniques and traditional skills of seamanship
which enabled our forefathers to handle these heavy gaff-rigged fishing smacks and
their gear. Ideal for those with some sailing experience and an interest in learning
more about sailing traditional craft.
An excellent complement to RYA practical courses in seamanship and navigation which
will give you confidence in handling a very traditional bawley.
Topics covered - Awareness of local wind, tide & currents; boat-handling etc.; handling
gaff-rigged sails, anchoring, heaving-to, reefing etc.