UTTING, Benjamin Ernest

1913 - 1996

Benjamin Ernest Utting was born at 5 Belvedere Place, Kessingland Beach, Suffolk, Suffolk on 29 December 1913, son of Austin Harold Hammond Utting (1882-26 January 1915), a fisherman who died during the First World War as a fourth hand on the 'Rio', and his wife Annie née Welsh (born 1888), who married at Kessingland on 25 December 1907. Benjamin married at Lothingland, Suffolk in 1936, Sylvia Daphne Durrant (30 October 1913-1980) and in 1939, 'a fisherman and weekly artist' living at Jones Cottages, Kessingland, Suffolk with his wife Sylvia. By the time of the Second World War, the Lowestoft fishing industry was in decline along the stretch of the Norfolk and Suffolk coast and tourists were taking over, moving in to enjoy the air, the newly built promenades, and the frequent train connections with London. The tourists took photographs of the local fishermen, lolling against their boats with high Cossack hats, tight Guernsey sweaters, heavy thigh boots with metal cleats. But, like many others, with the fishermen not enough money to live they indulged in the artist painting boats and their surroundings, selling them to eke out their weekly wages and Utting was both a fisherman and painter. Benjamin Ernest Utting died at Kessingland, Suffolk on 11 January 1996.