Much has been written about the loss of Hallsands village to the encroaching sea, of how the dredging of sand from the quiet bay to facilitate the building of Devonport Dockyard saw the waves wash away a whole community. Here for the first time the story is told through the eyes of a single family – from the day the dredger arrived in the 1890s, to the enforced exodus from the village in the 1920s, and the rebuilding of their lives through the 1940s and 1950s. With the death of one of the remaining fishermen who fought the authorities to maintain a traditional way of life, four remarkable sisters now enter the scene and this is their story. In the face of great hardship these extraordinary women, daughters of a fisherman, start rebuilding their lives. Against all odds, and facing the hardships of the open sea, they continue to fish for their livelihood, not only competing successfully in what was almost exclusively a man’s world, but bringing innovation onto their dangerous trade. They then embark on the building of a hotel overlooking the old village, making the blocks themselves and undertaking much of the labour involved.
Through a superb text, written by the son of one of the sisters, and illustrated with many photographs never before published, the book brings to life the human story behind the tragedy of Hallsands.
The authors, Ruth and Frank Milton are direct descendants of the four sisters of Hallsands.
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