Online Exhibitions & Stories

Sarah Ready

Rewriting Women into Maritime History
Fishing Regulatory and Welfare Advisor, Willow Lobster Pot maker, and Fisher

Sarah Ready

Location: Brixham, Devon, UK

A Beacon of Fishing Inspiration

Sarah Ready is a woman with a deep and uncompromising connection to the fishing industry. She weaves different threads of the fishing industry together to enact change, while preserving tradition and heritage.

Her unwavering commitment to the fishing industry stems from her deep-rooted understanding of its significance, both as a way of life and as a vital part of coastal communities. She tirelessly advocates for fair treatment, highlighting the mental health implications of excessive regulations and the need for a balanced approach to safety measures. Sarah's ability to navigate the fragmented regulatory landscape, characterised by disparate departments and fragmented data, underscores the importance of legal support for fishers.

As a lawyer, Sarah recognised the need to offer a helping hand to fishers, dedicating a portion of her practice to pro bono work for fishers caught in the snare of regulatory complexities. During lockdown her personal pro bono endeavours evolved into a pro bono clinic, where, under her guidance, compassionate solicitors and barristers gather to assist fishers who find themselves entangled in a regulatory system that they struggle to navigate alone. Sarah weaves an intricate tapestry of justice, one thread at a time.

She blends her pro bono legal work with the tangible act of crafting, taking time to breathe life into traditional willow lobster pots. The dichotomy is a symphony of inspiration, where her passion for justice fuels her determination, while the act of creation bestows tranquillity. By embracing both, she channels her energy to effect positive change. She is among the few individuals who continue to produce these pots commercially, distinguishing them from decorative counterparts by their durability and suitability for use in water.


Her passion extends beyond her legal and crafting pursuits. Sarah actively engages in lobbying efforts to address pressing issues in the fishing industry. Her involvement with the Low Impact Fishers of Europe organisation has granted her the opportunity to collaborate with fishers from various coastal communities, exchanging knowledge and observing different fishing practices. This firsthand experience has enhanced her ability to advocate for the fishing industry, particularly when comparing the implementation of EU legislation in different countries.

Sarah's commitment to her various roles makes her daily routine unpredictable. As she never knows what will fill her inbox each day, she approaches her work with adaptability and dedication. Her efforts have earned her recognition and funding from the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust and an invitation to present her lobster pots to the Royal Warrant Holders Association.

The challenges faced by the fishing industry are ever-present, and Sarah confronts them with resilience. Whether it is navigating unpredictable seasons, responding to regulatory burdens, or addressing labour shortages, she remains steadfast in her dedication. She recognises the importance of inspiring the next generation to carry the torch while acknowledging the difficulties in attracting young individuals due to the demanding nature of the work and regulatory constraints.


"Sarah is a true champion of the fishing industry, a woman whose devotion and multifaceted contributions inspire others to embrace their passions and effect positive change."
Carly Fields


Her journey serves as a testament to the resilience and determination required to safeguard traditions, preserve heritage, and advocate for justice within an ever-evolving maritime world.


Back to exhibition home page


Written by Carly Fields

© Emilie Sandy Photography, 2023