A Colourful Life – Behind the Scenes in Greater Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth Smoke House and Potteries is uniquely situated next to the medieval town wall, and is home to Ernie, who has turned a former traditional Great Yarmouth herring smoke house into a treasure trove of oil paintings, pottery and Yarmouth lore, all created and collected by him.

Born in a Yarmouth Row, a ‘one up one down house’ in narrow streets just 34 inches wide in places, Ernie grew up nearby the ship wharf on South Quay amid the sights and sounds and smells of a town in it’s herring heyday, when fisher girls travelled the country behind the herring catch to find work. His knowledge of the town’s history and heritage is unsurpassed and inspires him to paint huge canvases and seascapes depicting Yarmouth life.

Rarely seen without his artist’s smock, Ernie is never far from a paintbrush or his potter’s wheel and can usually be relied upon to recount fascinating stories from his past or legends learned when he was a child, intertwined with a good dose of local heritage. It all started with a box of oil paints he won in a competition…

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