'Rupert the Fish’ Stephenson has become a local celebrity.
Born Robert, he gained his ‘Rupert’ nickname in the mid
1970’s when he would wear yellow checked trousers, similar to
those of Rupert the Bear.
Robert was born at Keresley Hospital in 1959. The hospital
later became the Royal Court Hotel.
As a child Robert lived in the countryside for ten years at
Oak Lane, Meriden just off the A45 bypass.
His two brothers joined the army and his father sadly died so
the house in Meriden became too big for his mother to manage.
The family therefore decided to move to a smaller place in Stoke
Robert's mother remarried and they stayed in Stoke for 8
years until his stepfather died.
The family upped sticks again and moved to Coundon where they
eventually bought Robert's aunty's house where they have lived
for the past 20 years.
Robert left school in 1976 and started an apprenticeship with
the City Council in the Parks Department.
THE SKY BLUES '87
But his roots lay in the retail market where he had been
working on Saturdays and school holidays since he was a boy.
Robert's first full-time job on the market was with Les Swann
the corn merchant.
He stayed there for five years before moving to Bert
Robert spent another five years with Bert getting a first
rate training in the fish trade.
But Robert got itchy feet and decided he needed a complete
change of scenery and so went to work with Tom Whites Skips for
The market beckoned again when suddenly in 1990 his Uncle
Francis had a heart attack and retired and Robert was given the
chance to buy his own stall.
Rupert has been plying his trade as a fishmonger in Coventry
Retail Market since then and has built up a reputation for top
quality fresh fish and game.