Monday 17th July the Southern North Sea and Eastern Channel Mixed Flatfish Fisheries Management Plan consultation has opened for 12-weeks. The consultation closes on 1st October 2023. As the Angling Trust understand it, there will be two opportunities to respond: online consultation via Citizen Space, and in-person via a Defra roadshow (details still to be announced). You can view the consultation here.

The North Sea and Eastern Channel Mixed Flatfish Fisheries Management Plan applies to the area outlined below in pink in the above image.

Many species affected by this FMP are of recreational interest and value. Please see a complete list below:

  • Lemon sole (Microstomus kitt)
  • Witch (Glyptocephalus cynoglossus)
  • Turbot (Scophthalmus maximus)
  • Brill (Scophthalmus rhombus)
  • Dab (Limanda limanda)
  • Flounder (Platichthys flesus)
  • Atlantic halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus)
  • Plaice (Pleuronectes platessa)
  • Common sole (Solea solea)

The supporting consultation documents are extensive: Consultation documentMixed flatfish FMPFMP annexesEnvironmental report and impact assessment. The Angling Trust will shortly publish an advice sheet for anglers to highlight the key areas of importance to our sport and for anglers who wish to respond to the consultation. We will publish our consultation response in due course.

The Angling Trust remain committed to advocating for ecosystem-based fisheries management, amplifying anglers voices in fisheries management decision-making and transitions UK fisheries away from environmentally damaging practices.

The value of recreational angling has long been under appreciated by government. Through our newfound position as a recognised stakeholder and the opportunity presented by fishery management plans, the Angling Trust are working hard on behalf of recreational sea angling to make this shared vision a reality.

We need anglers like you to respond to the consultation and support the positive aspects of the mixed flatfish FMP while pushing back on the less ambitious parts. The more anglers, skippers, clubs, guides, tackle shops and trade businesses who respond to this consultation, the louder our voice.