Noble’s Shellfish – five generations of curing in Whitby
Noble’s Shellfish & Curing Whitby is a local family business with over 100 years’ experience in the preparation of fresh fish, shellfish and cured fish, including our renowned Whitby kippers.
We source all our shellfish and fish from reputable local suppliers in and around the Whitby area whenever available.
Our products are sustainably sourced wherever possible. Supplies are fully traceable and always transported under refrigerated conditions.
History – how it all began…
My great grandfather David James Wood was born on 2nd November 1869 in Whitby. In the 1891 census David and Martha Wood (nee Harland) were living in Kiln Yard at the foot of the famous 199 steps.
Prior to this, David and Martha lived at the top of Henrietta Street. However, due to cliff subsidence, their house was leaning so badly that the top floor of the property had to be removed, which is how they came to live in Kiln Yard.
David and Martha ran a small business curing herrings – otherwise known as kippers. After cleaning and ‘brining’, the herrings would be hung to dry in preparation for the cold smoking process. David would travel to the local sawmill in a trap pulled by his pony, Polly, to collect oak shavings and sawdust before preparing the smoking fires for the kipper house.
As well as curing the herring to make kippers, they would boil and sell crabs and the winkles they gathered from the scaur below the abbey. They eventually bought the first family shop on Sandgate, which is still in business today, although not with our family. The rest, as they say, is history.
Uncle Joe Noble hanging herrings in Noble’s kipper house on Henrietta Street in the 60’s.
Me, John Noble, in the new modern smokehouse in 2018, bringing out the kippers.
Me and my sister standing in front of the kipper stall on Pier Road in the mid 70’s.
The stall on Pier Road in the 1970’s
My father, John Noble, on the quayside.
Noble’s Shellfish and Curing Whitby is based in a new modern unit at Sea View Farm. The unit has all the usual advantages of hygiene and efficiency, while still drawing on the traditions and skills passed down through generations of our family.
We supply a range of products, including traditional oak-smoked kippers, kipper fillets, lobsters, crabs, dressed crabs and cold and hot smoked salmon.
John Noble with a box of famous Whitby kippers.
Sea View Farm