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Meet the Locals - Sandy Mathers. Sustainable Fishing off the west coast of Scotland

Local fisherman hauling in creels off the coast of the Island of Muck
Sandy Mathers - The Little Red Boat

A Seafaring Legacy

Meet Sandy. His days start early. As well as fishing, he has to fit in working the croft and meeting the ferry at the pier in his role as ferry docker. His connection to the sea runs deep, a legacy passed down through generations. As a child, his grandfather would take him out creel fishing on a small wooden dinghy using handmade wooden creels. His father embarked on a fishing career in the 1970’s when they moved to Muck. Tragically, he was lost at sea when Sandy was just ten years old.

After college, Sandy joined the crew of Brian Walters' creel boat, working tirelessly off the coast of Muck. With each haul and every storm weathered, he was one step closer to owning his own boat - The Little Red Boat.

Navigating the Elements

The weather in this coastal region can change in the blink of an eye. Sandy learned a valuable lesson from Brian Walters – if you find yourself gazing at the sea for too long to decide whether it's safe to fish, it's probably best to stay ashore. The Scottish weather, after all, is known for its capricious nature. The impacts of which were felt keenly last November when the Little Red Boat was destroyed whilst moored. Thankfully no one was on board at the time but losing the boat was a massive setback for Sandy and his family. The Muck community and supporters rallied round and Sandy was able to purchase a new boat, the Heather Belle, and make further plans for the future.

Sustainable Fishing

But life at sea is more than just work for Sandy. On his fishing adventures, he's been graced by magnificent sightings of whales, dolphins, and even sharks swimming gracefully around his boat. Each encounter is a reminder of the incredible beauty of the marine world. The heart of Sandy's work lies in his sustainable fishing methods and his commitment to locality. Everything is sold locally - to local people, visitors and businesses in Muck, Mallaig, and Arisaig.

Future Plans

Sandy and his wife Vicky are moving to the next stage of the business: setting up a seafood kitchen, where they can cook and prepare their catch for sale making it even easier to enjoy their wonderful seafood. They are hoping to be fully up and running with this by Spring 2024.

If you are visiting the Isle of Muck, get in touch with Sandy or Vicky and enjoy the freshest seafood caught in the rich, cold waters off the west coast of Scotland.

Sandy Mathers

M - 07444 799787

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