Welcome to Leigh Seafood

The port at Leigh-on-Sea has been at the heart of the town’s community since records began. Today, it holds special significance as a site of cultural heritage, a sustainable fishing industry and heaps of local seaside charm for visitors and residents alike.

MSC Certified Sustainable

In December 2019 the Marine Stewardship Council certified the North Thames Cockle Fishery as sustainable, acknowledging the efforts of the fishery to operate within sustainable limits and minimise environmental damage. As one of the most important fisheries in Europe, Leigh’s cockle fishery represents a positive step towards sustainable and prosperous fishing across the UK.

Leigh Port Partnership

Leigh Seafood is led by the local industry in partnership with Leigh Port Partnership (LPP). LPP is working to support a prosperous future for the fishing industry in the North Thames, which preserves and enriches the cultural heritage of the port at Old Leigh by telling the story of local seafood. 

People of Leigh


Leigh fishermen head out to sea early in the morning to source fresh, quality catch - from mullet to prawns, Dover sole to cockles. The cockle fishery boasts a cooperative of 14 licensed cockle vessels which suction the shells from the seabed via modern, low-impact hydraulic dredges. Smaller shells are automatically released back into the ocean, keeping stocks sustainable for the next generation of Leigh fishers.


Local processors transform the day’s catch into seafood products ready to be sold. A high proportion of the catch landed at Leigh is exported - our cockles are hugely popular in Spain! It’s often heavy work, as cockles are lifted from their vessels in tonne bags before being transported to processing factories where they are cooked, cleaned, and packaged.


Showcasing Leigh Seafood in its finest forms, fishmongers in Leigh sell fresh, sustainable seafood straight to the public. Many of the iconic bottle-green cockle sheds lining the port at Old Leigh are now home to thriving fishmongers, selling top-quality produce for you to prepare at home, or local snacks you can enjoy on the spot.


Local chefs and restaurants are proud to offer locally caught Leigh Seafood on their menus. Chefs play a hugely important role in supporting the fishing industry, showing just how versatile local catch can be, and cementing Leigh-on-Sea’s reputation as a must-visit destination for quality British seafood!

Seasonal, sustainable, scrumptious

Seafood can be a daunting ingredient to work with, particularly when trying new and exciting species! However it really is a simple and exciting ingredient to use. For fresh ideas and inspiration on how to cook our local Leigh seafood, our Recipes page has an array of delicious ideas to get you started in the kitchen..