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Enderby’s due to start work on expanding their historic smokehouse

3:15 pm, Monday, 6th November 2023 - 7 months ago


Work is due to re-start at Alfred Enderbys Smokehouse on the expansion of the historic smokehouse on Grimsby’s historic docks.

Over the last year, £150,000 worth of structural repair work, funded by a PSiCA (Partnership Scheme in Conservation Areas) grant, was done to the main building, which also included: reinstating historic features; repair and addition of new turning mechanisms to the cowls; and completing the impressive paint works to the gable wall that now advertise the company.

Now, phase two of the works, supported by another grant of £150,000 through the PSiCA scheme, will help with structural repairs to facilitate the company’s expansion into building 13, the former Marconi building.

Building 13 was constructed in 1947 as part of the post-war re-build of this area, the previous buildings have been demolished following bomb damage in World War 2. It was constructed for the Marconi International Marine Communication Company, Ltd, who continued to use the building into the 1980s. By 1992, however, the full lease was assigned to Kevin Stanfield, who many who worked on the Docks will remember. He remained in occupation until January 2008, with the building have been largely empty since then although until recently part of the ground floor was used for storage by Grimsby Cleethorpes Lions Club. 

Enderbys are aiming to use the new building to expand the business, and also to enable a bigger, more accessible space for group visits and tours to learn about the protected Traditional Grimsby Smoked Fish method.

The grant money will be used to remove the PVC windows and reinstate more authentic Crittal-style windows on the first floor as well as repair and conservation of the existing 1947 Crittal-style windows, repair the roof, repair and repoint the masonry and install new cast iron rainwater goods.

Patrick Salmon, MD of Enderbys, said: “We can’t wait for the next phase of works. We’ve been in Grimsby for many years, and we’re working on our plans for the future and the second building so that we can involve the community and visitors more in learning about the traditional processes and our work.” 

The Smokehouse building listed at Grade II and is one of the few remaining smokehouses in the area which still uses the geographically protected cold-smoking method.

Old maps show that the smokehouse was originally constructed as a smithy between 1896 and 1905, but between 1917 and 1928 was converted to fish curing and has remained so ever since. Alfred Enderby Ltd is one of four companies which form the Grimsby Traditional Fish Smokers Group, which received EU recognition for its method.

North East Lincolnshire Council’s leader, Cllr Philip Jackson, said: “We have a fascinating history in our ports, and Grimsby is known worldwide for its smoked fish. Enderby’s are one of a few remaining traditional smokehouses that keep this work going.

“This area of the port is a unique place, and we must continue to look at how to make it safe and welcoming to work in. There are many different sectors starting to use the older buildings and help to revitalise the port area, which can only be a good thing – we must help protect our port, and be proud of it.”

Simon Bird, Regional Director of the Humber ports, said: “It’s great to see Alfred Enderby expanding and to bring another historic building back into use. The smokehouse has been a landmark for many years on the Port of Grimsby and the work that has been done to restore its unique character, has certainly helped in instilling pride in this quarter of the docks known as the Kasbah. The next phase will see even greater things happen. We’re looking forward to working with Patrick and Toni Salmon for many more years. Their enthusiasm has done much to promote the wider seafood industry in Grimsby and the art of cold-smoking, and help keep the sector alive.”

David Walsh, Principal Adviser at Historic England, said: “We are very pleased to support the expansion of this important business on the historic docks. The continued heritage led regeneration of the ‘Kasbah’ with new businesses coming into the area and established organisations expanding points to a bright future for this part of Grimsby.”

The PSiCA is being delivered as part of the Greater Grimsby Heritage Action Zone. The scheme has a total pot of £1m and is a joint project between Historic England and North East Lincolnshire Council, with support from ABP. 

The PSiCA grant scheme is open to businesses on the Kasbah on the Port of Grimsby or organisations that may be interested in moving to this conservation area. Anyone interested should contact Dr Stella Jackson, Heritage Action Zone Project Manager, at [email protected].

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