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NFSA to Disband?

Aug 04,2007 SACN


Following an announcement that Sport England will no longer be part funding the UK Angling Governing Bodies, the National Federation of Sea Anglers(NFSA) has written to its members explaining that without the Sport England funding, it will no longer be possible to fund NFSA activities.

Disbanding the NFSA is one of three options that the board of the NFSA has presented to its membership.

This news comes at a time that the NFSA must find particularly galling, with membership increasing , the organisation getting to grips with putting conservation and representation issues at the top of the agenda, as a recent membership survey demanded, and an increasing level of satisfaction with the NFSA's performance on a number of fronts.

As the organisation, recognised as the principle representative organisation by Government, and at a time when so many issues and opportunities are being presented to the sport through Government initiatives, failure of the NFSA to deal with this blow could leave sea angling vulnerable when a strong representative organisation is most needed.

And that could have dire consequences for all sea anglers, and the future of the sport for many years to come.

Principally the challenge is to make up the shortfall in funding, and the NFSA has also proposed increasing membership subscriptions for individuals from £16 to £21 and the levy on clubs from £1 to £2.

Assuming that membership levels stay constant, this would allow the NFSA to tread water.

A further proposal, recommended for acceptance by the NFSA board is to increase membership to £26 a head, and the club levy to £3 per head, giving the organisation a good margin to forge ahead with so much of the necessary work to protect our rights and the quality of our fishing in the years to come.

Of course, an increase in membership would also greatly increase the strength of the organisation, not only by providing the necessary funding, but also the political clout needed to win when undertaking complex negotiations with both the Government, and other marine stakeholders.

And anglers who have previously felt safe in leaving it all up to others, should now reconsider their position and commitment to the sport.

Notes:

- Sport England Funding for angling development will in future be channelled through a single body representing all three disciplines, sea, coarse and game.

The new body, referred to as the Angling Development Board, will have represention from each of the current governing bodies, but if the NFSA disbands, then sea angling will not have an effective voice on how that money should be spent when competing with coarse and game angling interests.

- The NFSA have stated that none of their current income goes towards financing match fishing, in fact match fishing generates a small additional amount of income for the NFSA.

- The withdrawal of Sport England funding affects only the English Governing bodies.  The Welsh FSA, Irish FSA and Scottish FSA are not affected.

- The NFSA is the recognised body representing all of the UK within the European Anglers Alliance and its disbandment would affect the representation of UK anglers at the European level

- The NFSA also represents sea anglers within FACT

Report in Western Morning News



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