Not so long ago Fraserburgh was dubbed the heroin capital of Britain, where fishing boat skippers struggled to find crew members who were not high on drugs or too exhausted from the latest binge to even turn up for work.
But after years of gloom the fishing port is enjoying a cautious revival after adopting a radical solution to ensure its boats no longer have to rely on drug-addicted locals: by recruiting Filipinos from the other side of the world, known for their clean living and strict Roman Catholicism.
Up and down the east coast of Scotland, in fishing ports not so long ago written off as economic hell holes with no future, the face of Scottish fishing is being transformed as young Filipino men arrive in increasing numbers.
Peter Willcox, 43, owner of the Bountiful, who has three Filipinos among his five crew, says that their impact cannot be exaggerated. “We wouldn’t be able to put out to sea without them,” he says. “They are great workers, but most of all you can trust them. They won’t come home drunk or off their faces.”
The local shipyard is now so busy that it has a two-year backlog on new boat orders.
Full story at The Times.