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G: Gansey

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fisherman.
John 'Sparrow' Hardingham, Sheringham lifeboatman and fisherman about 1920.

A fisherman's gansey was once his most distinctive feature.

A navy blue jumper, patterned on the top half and part of the sleeves, was a proud possession.

It was likely to be knitted by a loved one and carried a pattern characteristic of the fishing port or the family.

Ganseys could be found all round the North Sea from the early 19th century to the middle of the 20th century and the tradition lives on with a few Norfolk fishermen today.

jumper.
Henry Little's gansey

Of all the Norfolk fishing ports, Sheringham is particularly noted for its ganseys. They are extremely fine, knitted on size 16 or even 17 needles with three-ply worstead wool. The result is a fabric that is difficult to believe is handknitted with extremely crisp and delicate patterns.

pattern.
Rope pattern

The several dozen patterns are known from Sheringham quash the oft-repeated remark that 'each port has its own pattern'.





Text courtesy of Cromer Museum.

Internet sites:
Cromer Museum

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See also
Sense of Place
Weird Norfolk
Norfolk Dialect
Norfolk traditions

 





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