Why these fantastic Tesco fishmongers walked 140 miles from Stoke-on-Trent to Grimsby

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 30 Apr 2018

A pair of passionate fishmongers have braved the elements to raise money for the Fishermen's Mission, making a 140 mile journey by foot from Stoke-on-Trent to Grimsby.

Tesco wet fish counter duo Emma McKeating and Nicola Rowbotham, have fallen in love with the fishing industry since they started their jobs at the supermarket, competing in fish craft competitions and traveling all over the country on their days off to visit fish markets and fishermen.

Wanting to do their bit to help the Fishermen's Mission, which supports current and ex-fishermen in times of crisis of need, they decided to set off on a 'pilgrimage' as they walked from Emma's fish counter in Stoke all the way to the UK home of seafood, with a finish line at the Flatfish fish processing factory in Grimsby.

Nicola Rowbotham and Emma McKeating complete their 9 day walk from Stoke, to the Flatfish factory site in Grimsby, welcomed by staff members and directors.

Steve Stansfield, managing director of Flatfish, was very proud to be part of the pair's journey, who they have got to know over the years through fish craft competitions and their sheer love of a good bit of fish.

Steve said: "Emma and Nicola have sort of become little celebrities in the fish industry, they just have so much passion for everything to do with it.

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"We first met at a fish craft competition in Cleethorpes and since then Flatfish have kept in touch with them and we think that the work they do to promote the industry and support fishermen all over the country has just been fantastic."

The fishmongers were very emotional as they finished their nine day journey, that took them through the Peak District and the Lincolnshire Wolds, embracing each other as they crossed the finishing line set up by the staff from Flatfish as they lined the entrance to the car park to applaud them for their efforts.

Champagne shower at the finish line

Emma said: "I started work as a fish monger around five years ago and since then I have learned so much about the industry and fallen in love with it.

"Thanks to the training that I have been given in Tesco I have been in fish craft competitions and through them got to meet so many people from all over the country who work in the fish industry.

"We have been all over the country to different fish markets and places of importance in our country's fishing history, and Grimsby is certainly one of our favourites, we love it here."

Jim Portus, of the Brixham Fish Market in South Devon, was representing the Fishermen's Mission, travelling all the way to Waltham so that he could walk the final 6 and a half miles with the women.

He said: "We are very grateful for the effort that Nicola and Emma have put in to raise money for the Mission.

"I have got to know them well over the last few years, and their passion and love for the fishing industry truly amazes me.

"The Fishermen's Mission dedicates itself to helping fishermen and ex-fishermen whenever they are in times of need or crisis, as well as the families of fishermen who may have got injured or killed during the course of their work."

If you would like to find out more about the Fishermen's Mission and the work that they do, visit their website.

To sponsor the duo visit their fundraising page

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