The Angling Trust will be calling on all local authorities around England’s coast to follow the lead set by Rother District Council in East Sussex who has thrown its support behind recreational sea anglers by recognising them as all-year-round visitors and important contributors to the seaside economy.
Following an impressive campaign by local anglers and businesses – which the Angling Trust’s Legal arm, Fish Legal, supported – the proposed byelaws which would have restricted sea angling and bait collection have been abandoned in favour of embracing the many benefits that angling can bring to the local community.
A voluntary code of conduct for anglers will now be drawn up to ensure that Rother’s coastline can continue to be enjoyed by all beach users – including sea anglers.
“We were willing to change the proposals and together we will now make even better use of our fantastic seaside resources for everyone’s benefit.” said Cllr Martin Kenward, Rother council’s lead member for culture, sport and tourism.
David Mitchell, the Angling Trust’s Marine Environmental Campaigns Manager said, “The Angling Trust applauds the council’s decision. We hope it will pave the way for more local authorities to wake up to the potential social, cultural and economic benefits of supporting and developing sea angling.”
He continued, “There are many coastal resorts that could take measures to reinvent themselves as angler-friendly venues and start reaping the benefits. We will be doing all we can over the coming months and years to build on the success of Rother’s anglers and ensure that sea angling is seen as an asset that should be encouraged rather than a nuisance activity that needs to be controlled.”