Wednesday 11th June 2014 from 7.30pm at The Carlton Hotel, 187 Ayr Road, Prestwick, KA9 1TP.
Ayr Sea Angling Club has organised a meeting as a follow up to the Scottish Government’s Clyde 2020 seminar held in April. SSACN are to give a short presentation outlining their work but the main reason for evening is to hear SIFT’s aims to restore the Clyde to an economically thriving fishery for both Sea Angling and commercial interests.
On the back of EU legislation, the Scottish Government are required to put in place a programme of measures which would bring the Clyde back to “Good Environmental Status” by 2020 SIFT (http://www.sift-uk.org ) will make a presentation on their proposed Regulating Order in the Firth of Clyde; which they hope to submit by the end of 2014, which would establish large areas of the Firth, closed to mobile gear. This is intended to ensure the recovery of the finfish population by protecting sensitive seabed habitats.
After the presentations, the floor will be opened to a discussion. Recreational Sea Angling or RSA became popular in Scotland and particularly in the Clyde in the 1960’s; the Tourist Board suggested at the time that, “Sea Angling offered “immense scope, big catches and many specimens”. In the 1960’s and 70’s places like Arran, Gourock and Saltcoats regularly held major festivals with over 2000 entrants from all over Europe. In today’s terms the income would equate to £300,000 in a weekend and that doesn’t include food and beer.
Sea angling and related businesses were booming & then sadly, in 1979 trawlers were allowed back into the Clyde after a lengthy ban and the rest as they say is history. The last of the major festivals ceased in 1990 due to the lack of fish.
The Clyde is now described as “a fishery of last resort.” The situation is bad, but we believe that it is redeemable. In countries that have taken decisive action, stocks have recovered. Together, we can take such action to return the Clyde to a vibrant, living ecosystem that reverses the trends. Please come along and have your say.