Wanstead IS to get its own fishmonger

20140603-225600-82560352.jpgWanstead is to get its long wished-for fishmonger, the man behind the venture has confirmed.

Wansteadium reader Kevin Murphy, who has lived in Wanstead for 12 years, told us that his plan is “to give Wanstead a decent quality traditional-style fishmonger”.

“In the years I’ve lived in Wanstead there hasn’t been one here. I lived in Leytonstone before that – the fishmonger there closed when the Tesco opened and there hasn’t been one there since, so I think it’s definitely something the area needs,” he said.

“People are a lot more conscious of where there food comes from nowadays and I aim to be able to tell them where the fish is from. I shall actively be trying to source all fish from sustainable stocks, and where possible to get stock from MSC certified suppliers. I know this isn’t always going to be possible but it is something we feel quite strongly about and we’ll do our best.”

His background is not in fish, but rather in building “dealing systems and compliance engines” in the City. But the new shop, next door to Nice Croissant, will be the result of some years’ planning. In due course it should also include home-smoked fish.

It marks an enterprising period of regeneration for Wanstead, following on from the successful renovation of the Duke on Nightingale Lane. Plans for a gastro pub in the Manor House (the former Conservative HQ/Allied Irish Bank) are progressing, as is the burger restaurant Longhorn, shortly to open in the former Cinnamon.

33 thoughts on “Wanstead IS to get its own fishmonger”

  1. Been looking forward to this since the rumours first surfaced! I wish Kevin well – and will be there in the first few days after opening.

  2. Best news ever, Wanstead needs to be moving with the times and with all the new restaraunts – wish them every success.

  3. Just a thought. When you say:

    “I shall actively be trying to source all fish from sustainable stocks, and where possible to get stock from MSC certified suppliers. I know this isn’t always going to be possible but it is something we feel quite strongly about and we’ll do our best.”

    Why not only exclusively stock sustainable MSC (??) certified fish to avoid any ill feelings?

    We will probably use it once or twice providing it is competitive but realistically if the fish is cheaper from Tesco/Sainsburys on our monthly ‘Big Shop’ or from M&S (campaigned for on here) on the way home from work then we will more likely buy from them.
    We are not ones to be held to ransom by high prices just because it is a local business on the High Street I am afraid.

    That said, good luck. People have campaigned for it and someone is taking the risk. Let’s hope the campaigners use it!
    Next week I will reveal my plan for one of the empty units 🙂

  4. Sounds good but don’t fancy having a cuppa sitting outside Nice Croissant with wet fish as company! Good luck though.

  5. Yes, it’ll be good to see a different shop on the High St., besides all the coffee outlets we seemed to be deluged with! If the fish is of good/fresh quality & stocks are consistent, then it’s got a chance of success, but as said above cost has to be competitive to get repeat business, we’re not all rich!! Bon Chance!

  6. Just doing some sums…
    The vacant unit next to the Pet Shop is £22,500 per year (£1875 per month) to rent before other costs.
    Add utilities, staffing etc.. and you have some amazing business model in order to actually make it work.

    Obviously Kevin has done his homework but it is clear that the reason we have more empty units at the moment is because it costs so much to run an independent business.

    To put it into Pasties, Greggs need to sell roughly 1000 Pasties a week (166 a day at 6 days) to break even.

  7. If they aim to be as good as KC’s in Buckhurst Hill it will be worth it as that is where many discerning fish lovers go these days.

    A business like this is all about first impressions so please do not muck it up from day one!

    Best of luck!

  8. Great news.

    This will be a real test for 90% of the ‘save our high street’ lovies, who when faced with a slightly pricey sardine , will just head to their nearest Tesco.

    Fortunately I shall be buying my fishes on the High Street.

  9. Let’s hope that all the local restaurants source their fresh fish from Kevin. That’s the way it should work.

  10. Kevin sounds like a socialist type but good luck to him anyway!!! If his fish nuggets are half as good as Aldi’s I’ll certainly be a regular.

  11. I think it’s great to see this opening on the High Street and would definitely buy from there seeing as the quality (and left open fridges) at the Co-Op and Tesco are poor. Excited to see what the Manor House has in store and love The Duke too. Finally, a great place to have a drink. Go Wanstead! Good luck to Kevin too.

  12. I’m sure this place will do well, I for one will be going at least once or twice a week. For those who know and love their fish, will not mind paying an extra premium for a fresher and better quality fish. Obviously people will still go to tescos etc but the area has plenty of affluence so should do well.
    Kevin, if you’re having a few problems then you always get some “advice” from one or two people on here.

    Good Luck

  13. Best of luck Kevin, I’ll certainly be using you. Could I make one suggestion? Thanks. Could you stay open until 6pm one night of the week to give us a chance to pick something up on the way home from the tube?

  14. Well, a background in “dealing systems and compliance engines” doesn’t sound ideal for a future in fish, but I’ll save judgement. I hope those crying out for such an outlet actually patronise it week in week out.

    Longhorn has been an age in coming, but the door was open last eve and there appeared to be a pre-launch event going on (spied a very naff pink neon sign on the wall). They are not very clued up, seeing as we hadn’t been invited, as the No 1 patrons of Wanstead eateries! I predict it will do OK so long as it’s not overpriced. Likewise the new venture in the old Tory club – a decent gastro pub (if that is truly the format) can’t fail. See how busy is the Red Lion in Leytonstone, and their food is awful.

    It appears Bar Room Bar has finally closed – which would be an ideal location for a decent, fresh, modern Italian. Or indeed, an eat-in fish place like the Ark which is insanely overpriced, and very variable quality these days (and less busy than it was). There has to be, however, a limit to the number of eateries this area can support, and I fear we are approaching it now.

  15. Not directly related to the subject of fishmongers, I agree with the comment here suggesting that the shop stays open to 6pm some evenings. I’m astounded at how early many of the high street shops shut, and then complain that they’re losing trade to Westfield. Even if they stayed open one hour later, surely they’d get commuter footfall which would justify the extra time. Try getting a decent birthday card in Wanstead at 5:35pm and it’s virtually impossible. Mary Portas would have a field day here.

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