Hastings' net shops

4th July 2003 at 01:00
From the viewpoints on this walk it is impossible not to notice the tall black weather-board buildings on the beach around the fish market at Rock-A-Nore Road. These are Hastings' unique net shops.

Hastings is home to Britain's largest beach-launched fishing fleet and the net shops are not shops at all. They are used for drying fishing nets and storing equipment. Look around and you are sure to see crab pots, for example. The pot bases are approximately 3 feet (0.9 metres) in diameter, so use this opportunity for circle calculations such as area and circumference.

The net shops' unusual shape is attributable to the fact that when they were built, space in the Old Town was at a premium. So the fishermen built up rather than out. Most of the net shops are listed buildings like much of the Old Town - including the pavements.

The net shops' "footprint" is typically 9 x 8.5 feet (2.7 x 2.6 metres); count the number of planks to roof level and estimate their height. (Each plank is about 15cm high). How much space would be required if the shops were built "on their side"? How much more is this than the space used?

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