The ‘Jeanette’ which sank after it struck the Kilkeel pier in a severe gale. Thomas Curran was part of the crew, who were rescued by his brother Barney who risked his life and vessel by leaving the harbour to rescue them from the boat’s life raft.

1906 – Present Day

Sammy Mc Cullough’s father Artie was a great cook. He taught his sons and his wife dozens of different recipes. Scallops cooked in their shells, boiled cod, grilled mackerel, the list goes on. No-one remembers Artie Mc Cullough for his cooking however. They remember him for being the first in a line of Mc Cullough fishermen who were to work so hard and to apply themselves in such a way that today in 2011 they can call themselves part of Europe’s fishing elite.
Artie was mainly a skiff fisherman. He married Mary Jane Milligan and they had one daughter Lillian and four sons, Cecil, Edmund, Sammy and Bobby.

Cecil was the only one of the boys that did not go to sea, his sea sickness was too bad! Cecil ran a Milk business for a number of years before setting up a processing firm at the harbour called Kilkeel Kippering Company. His three sons now run the factory, with Cecil popping in every morning to keep an eye on things. Cecil at one time owned a boat called the Aurora, and his sons also fished a boat called Articus for a period.

Edmund owned trawlers such as the Crystal Sea throughout his career and fished a lot with his father Artie. His son Ian is now fishing with Sammy’s son Stephen, and his other son Edmund Junior was also a fisherman. Sammy and Bobby struck up a fishing partnership with Donal Mc Alinden who owned the Quo Vadis, and the three men fished together very successfully for many years.

Great Grandsons of Artie and Mary Mc Cullough are now fishing, with Stephen’s son Mark now part of the crew of the Stephanie M. The story is one of humble beginnings, of a strong family bond and proof of how far hard work can take you in life.