The cod end of the net alongside the fishing boat Guiding Light

Northern Seas Fishing

A series of images focusing on the fishing industry and the working lives of fishermen around the Shetland Islands, Scotland

The waters surrounding Shetland are rich in marine life. They have been fished by many for centuries, providing a source of food and income. The fishing industry is the main source of income for the local economy and has become an integral part of Shetland life for many. The Shetland seafood industry is worth around £300 million annually, far more than any other industry in the isles.
Many fishermen spend a huge part of their lives at sea, often battling the elements to get their catch. Sea conditions can be extreme around Shetland as winds can often gust over 100mph and wave heights have been known to reach over 15m high.
This project was undertaken to catch a glimpse of the working lives of fishermen in the surrounding waters of Shetland.

Deck of the Shetland fishing vessel Radiant Star Stormy sea view from a fishing boat's wheelhouse Fisherman operating the crane

Alison Kay - LK57

Overhead view of the fishing vessel Alison Kay at sea Fisherman operating a winch on the deck Skipper of the Alison Kay outside Peterhead fish market Fishermen on deck as boat arrives in Peterhead, Scotland Fisherman on deck in Peterhead harbour Cod-end of the net full of fish

Radiant Star - LK71

Fishing vessel Radiant Star at sea Skipper of the fishing vessel Radiant Star Portside deck view of the Radiant Star Close-up shot of net-mending Fisherman on deck with hook Green fishing net is hauled aboard the Radiant Star


Early morning on the Norweigian longliner Scombrus Fisherman fixing the fishing lines Crew member moving a hose on deck Mackerel coming out of the water Mackerel coming up on the fishing lines Mackerel coming down a chute into a well in the centre of the boat

Voyager - N905

Pelagic trawler Voyager in Lerwick harbour Fisherman operates a crane remotely Large fishing net surfacing as it's hauled aboard The skipper watches operations from the wheelhouse Mackerel being pumped ashore from the vessel into trailers Evening view of the Voyager's bow and mooring lines

Prolific - LK986

Deck view of the fishing trawler Prolific Fisherman looking out the stern Rear of the wheelhoue Two fishermen operate winches A view of stormy seas out the window of the fishing trawler Prolific A fisherman reaches out the stern to work with fishing gear

Guiding Light - LK64

Deck view of the Shetland based fishing trawler Guiding Light Fishermen working on deck as the net is emptied into the hold Wheel house of the fishing vessel Guiding Light Fisherman reaching for a rope A knot is tied to secure the cod-end of the fishing net A fisherman operates a crane

Inshore Images

Images taken in the harbours and around the shores of Shetland, of the fishing fleet and its fishermen.

A fisherman mends a net in Scalloway harbour Fishing trawler Guardian Angell leaves Lerwick harbour Fishing trawler Copious passing lighthouse in stormy weather
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