There will be some fishy goings-on in Swanage next month. Flat-fishy, shellfishy, and everything in between because the town is holding its first-ever Fish Festival.

From June 5-7 the town will be celebrating the bounty of the sea with cooking demonstrations, foraging master classes, crabbing competitions, sea shanties and mouth-watering seafood.

There’ll be talks on what wine to pick for eating fish dishes, sea fishing, beach awareness events, coastal walks and a ‘fansea’ dress competition for the children.

Ed Baines, co-owner at Randal & Aubin, of Soho in London and ‘Britain’s Best Dish’ fame is supporting the event and will be on hand to offer advice on serving up the perfect fish dish.

“I’m thrilled to be part of the Swanage Fish Festival,” he says.

“I regularly visit Swanage and like to use local produce so what better location to cook fish than overlooking the bay!”

Organisers say they are working closely with local fishermen and cooking experts to put seafood on the menu during the event which takes place around the town and in Prince Albert Gardens.

Restaurants, pubs and cafés will be serving up a range of fish specialities as part of ‘Fishy Friday’.

Visitors will be invited to relax and browse the stalls offering arts and craft demonstrations, and local produce and superb fish dishes with drinks to match.

Evenings will comprise of live music accompanied by champagne and delicious paella overlooking Swanage bay.

Caroline Finch, one of the Swanage Fish Festival organisers, said: “We are extremely excited to host Swanage’s first ever fish festival and are delighted to have Ed Baines on board to help show off our quality, local seafood”.

She pointed out that the event will be raising money for The Fishermen’s Mission, RNLI and The Swanage Pier Trust, supporting the excellent work done by these ocean-looking charities.

  • Full details for businesses wishing to get involved can be found at