History of Oyster Production at Lissadell, Sligo
Lissadell, birthplace of Irish revolutionary Constance Markievicz, daughter of Sir Robert Gore-Booth, is renowned also as the source of Lissadell Oysters, which had an established reputation in London restaurants in the mid-ninteenth century.
The Lissadell Oyster Fishery dates back to the 1860s when the Gore-Booth family established an extensive sub tidal oyster bed, growing native oysters (Ostrea Edulis) in the pristine Atlantic waters of Drumcliffe Bay. The quality of the oysters was excellent, and they became a big favourite of the top London restaurants who anxiously awaited the regular sailings of the specially adapted well boats bearing the gourmet oysters from Lissadell.
The fishery fell into decline in the 1930s but in 1986, Gigas oysters were introduced to the bay by the current producers. Through careful management of the production cycle, the current producers ensure the sustainability of this valuable resource.