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DEFRA Invited to Cornwall

Feb 20,2007 SACN


Recently, at the Invitation of the Chief Fisheries Officer at Cornwall Sea Fisheries Committee, a party of six officials from DEFRA visited the District to see the work of the committee.

During their visit, as well as attending a meeting of the committee, they were taken to visit fishing vessels, some of the fishing ports, fish restuarants, a fish market and to meet various people associated with the area's commercial fishing infrastructure.

But despite many recent assertations regarding the importance of the Recreational Sea Fisheries, and the Recreational Sea Angling sector dependent upon those fisheries, comprising many local businesses and livelihoods supported by the sector, the important and valuable RSA sector was completely ignored during the visit (apart from an item on the committee's agenda, responding to the DEFRA appeal that the committee consider applying bag limits to anglers' catches)

In order to make up for that oversight, local Cornish RSA interests have invited DEFRA back to see what they have missed.

The Sea Anglers Forum has sent the following invitation to DEFRA.

The Sea Anglers' Forum is a small group of sea anglers who meet on an informal basis to discuss the state of sea angling in Cornwall.

We hope that you enjoyed your recent visit to the commercial side of fishing in Cornwall, and would like to offer you a similar opportunity to see the recreational use of the sea, and the impact which it has on the local economy which was denied to you on your last visit.

We would like to remedy this and would suggest that we could offer an itinerary such as is detailed below:
 
- Meet a local bait digger

- Visit a commercial bait company

- Visit a small tackle manufacturer

- Visit a tackle wholesaler

- Visit a couple of tackle shops

- Visit a diving shop

- View a modern sea angling charter boat

- View a modern dive charter boat

- Meet with representatives of the Cornish Federation of Sea Anglers and also the National Federation of Sea Anglers
 
The above itinerary would allow you to see the investment that is currently being made in the recreational use of the sea, and the importance of these businesses directly to the local economy and also indirectly through visitors staying in the area.

An ideal time would be just before the Lance Peters Memorial Boat Angling Competition (run in aid of a charity) which is being held this year on 11th & 12th August, then you could also experience sea angling at first hand.

I do believe that you not only should you have had the opportunity to see all aspects of the Fishery in Cornwall when you came in January, which is a publicly owned asset, but also that you have a duty to do so.
 
We look forward to receiving your acceptance of the above invitiation

Anglers around the country, businesses dependent upon RSA, both directly and indirectly, and angling organisations will look forward to DEFRA accepting the invitation as a sign that both DEFRA and the Government really mean what they say when they claim to fully acknowledge the importance of the sector, both economically and socially, and the need to develop strong Recreational Sea Fisheries through action by the soon to be modernised Sea Fishery Committees. 



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