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Custard Head Fishing Premises

Hant's Harbour, Newfoundland and Labrador, A0B, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1999/04/24

Exterior photo, Custard Head Fishing Premises, located at the water's edge in Hant's Harbour, November 2004; HFNL/Dale Jarvis, 2005
Custard Head Fishing Premises, Hant's Harbour
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/01/26

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Custard Head Fishing Premises are a turn of the century fishing stage head and shed, located on Custard Head Road in Hant’s Harbour. The designation encompasses the footprint of the building and the stage head projecting into the water.

Heritage Value

The Custard Head Fishing Premises were designated a registered heritage structure because they have cultural and architectural values.

These premises are a fine example of a turn of the century fishing stage head and shed. This ocean front property represents the contrast in evolution in the fishing industry from the early 1900s to the present day, highly organized fishery. Located on the Hant’s Harbour beach the premises are typical of the independent entrepreneurial fishing initiatives of families along the Trinity South shore of Newfoundland. It represents how families would work together to prepare fish for personal consumption and for their livelihood. These structures are becoming unique in communities as the nature of the fishery changes. Family stages are falling into disrepair and many have been lost from the Newfoundland landscape. The Custard Head Fishing Premises are symbolic of the long-standing, traditional economic mainstay of most outport communities.

The Custard Head Fishing Premises have architectural value because they are a good example of traditional, vernacular outbuilding construction. Made from locally milled wood the buildings are comprised of wooden posts, logs, scrap planks, clapboard and cedar shingles. The uniqueness of the construction is a testament to time and place when any available materials were recycled. The premises are built on a downward slope to facilitate the loading and unloading of fish from various boats at high and low tide, and there are still original fishing artifacts inside, including the splitting table.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador unnumbered files: Hants Harbour - Custard Head Fishing Premises

Character-Defining Elements

All elements that define the building's simple venacular design including:
-use of recycled traditional materials;
-height and massing of fish stage/stage head;
-location at the ocean’s edge;
-simplicity of trim;
-use of red ochre colour on exterior;
-orientation to the water and land; and
-overall dimensions.



Newfoundland and Labrador

Recognition Authority

Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador

Recognition Statute

Historic Resources Act

Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce

Function - Category and Type



Food Supply
Fisheries Site

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, 1 Springdale Street, St. John's, NL

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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