Fishmonger’s back on the menu after 20 years

JPCT-21-01-12 S12040532a Chris Veasey, fishmonger, carfax, horsham, with father John on their stall  -photo by steve cobb

JPCT-21-01-12 S12040532a Chris Veasey, fishmonger, carfax, horsham, with father John on their stall -photo by steve cobb

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CHRIS Veasey’s fresh fish stall has proved so popular at Horsham’s Saturday market he has taken on a shop - the first fishmonger’s in the town for about 20 years.

The former Bloxhams bookmakers in the Carfax will feature an 18ft counter with all the fresh fish on display on ice and is likely to be called Veasey & Sons, the same as Chris’s shop in Forest Row.

Having fished from his town of Eastbourne for 30 years, Chris had a stall at East Grinstead Farmers’ Market and it was so successful he started a shop.

“A butcher in Forest Row retired and two years ago this April we opened,” he said.

“There are only 5,000 people in Forest Row but the shop is ridiculously popular.”

He set up stall at Horsham about three years ago. “It started off fairly quiet for about six or eight months but has now built into something very popular,” he said.

“It has taken us by surprise. In the summer months there are three of us behind the counter we have so many customers.

“Quite a number of people used to go down to the coast for their fish because it is so much fresher than from the supermarkets.

“There were four fishmongers at one time in Horsham but the last one shut about 20 years ago. Customers at the stall have mentioned they’ve missed it.”

Chris, who said fish was popular among those aged under 25 and above 45, will bring the day’s catch to Horsham from Eastbourne.

“You really get the pick of things as it comes off the boat,” he said.

“The three things we stand for and promote are we catch it ourselves, it’s sustainable and it’s fresh.”

Fish like hake and haddock, not found as far south as Eastbourne, are bought in.

The shop, managed by Phil Folkes, is due to open at the end of February.

PJ Aldred, of Horsham Markets, said: “We’re really thrilled Chris has been doing so well on the market that it has given him the confidence to invest in Horsham on an all year round, week by week basis.

“We are very pleased as well he is going to maintain a presence on the market.

“People are getting quite adventurous with the fish they buy and Chris’s is the best you can get anywhere.”