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Message Chief Executive, Angling Trust & Fish Legal

Written By: Mark Lyod
On Date: 2/1/2018

2017 has been another year of great progress for the Angling Trust and Fish Legal. We’ve won several battles to win greater protection for freshwater and marine fisheries and the freedom to fish for them. Fish Legal has taken numerous polluters to court and recovered tens of thousands of pounds in compensation for our member clubs and fishery owners. We have taught tens of thousands of anglers how to fish and run countless successful competitions. We have recruited nearly 500 volunteer bailiffs to support the work of the Environment Agency’s enforcement teams. Our partnership work with the Police goes from strength to strength and has transformed the way they deal with poaching, fish theft and other illegal activity. We have organised regional forums throughout the country to give anglers the chance to have their say. We have advised hundreds of fisheries about how to manage predation and prevent the spread of invasive species.

Although we receive some funding from the Environment Agency and Sport England for many of these activities, we remain fiercely independent and committed to representing our members’ interests fearlessly. Our campaigning and legal work has grown substantially in scope and impact over the past nine years and it’s only possible because of the funds that you, our members, give to us through subscriptions, donations and legacies. Thank you so much for your support and to the thousands of volunteers who give up their time as bailiffs, to serve on committees, to teach people to fish and to help organise matches. Thank you also to our dedicated and expert staff, who work tirelessly and regularly above and beyond the call of duty.

The fish and fishing we all hold dear face countless threats at a time of political turmoil but by standing together we can protect them for the next generation and seize the many opportunities to make them better.

Merry Christmas to you all and here’s to another successful year in 2018!
Get ready for Spring! Apply for a share of £400,000 to improve your club or fishery
It's going to be a happy new year for some angling clubs and fisheries. £400,000 of fishing licence income is being made available through the Angling Improvement Fund to help fund fishery improvements, measures to control predation, training coaches and supporting initiatives that promote health and wellbeing in older people. The Angling Trust, which administers the fund in partnership with the Environment Agency, is seeking applications by January 25th, 2018.
Catch & Release in 2018 for bass anglers - for now
EU Fisheries Ministers have scrapped a proposal to ban bass fishing by recreational sea anglers for the first six months of 2018. Instead, catch and release angling for bass all year round will continue with the prospect of a recreational bag limit in the second half of 2018 depending on a data review of updated ICES advice in March. The decision – which included further limits on commercial bass fishing – followed strong representation by the Angling Trust and other angling bodies across Europe . Read more

New measures to avoid river maintenance damage
The Angling Trust has welcomed the Environment Agency’s announcement that it will change the way that it manages river maintenance work to reduce the impact on fish and fishing.
Following extensive damage to trees and bankside vegetaion last winter, the Angling Trust had discussions with the Agency to try to put systems in place to prevent future destruction.

Last chance to take part
in our Membership Survey

If you haven't already done so, you have just over a week to take part in our online Membership Survey. The Angling Trust and Fish Legal are inviting members to tell us about the issues that matter to YOU. Maybe declining fish stocks? Predation? Poaching? Pollution? The survey takes around 15 minutes to complete and is suitable for all anglers - coarse, sea and game. But hurry, the survey will close at midday on Tuesday, 2nd January.

And the Xmas winner is...
Congratulations to Tony Norman from Herefordshire, winner of the Angling Trust Christmas Raffle. Tony has already put his £2,000 first prize to use buying an oil painting by author and illustrator "BB" - Denys Watkins Pitchford. Second prize went to David Chapman of Mansfield, Notts. (£1,500 Daiwa tackle), third prize to Barry Phillips of Ossett, West Yorks. (£750 Daiwa tackle) and fourth prize to F. Booth of Nottingham (£350 Daiwa tackle). Read more
Charity seeks your help
The West Sussex and Surrey Angling Academy uses fishing and the environment to provide training and support for children with learning issues. The charity is raising funds to replace lifebelt rings and housing which were stolen and damaged at the lake they use in Crawley. Make a donation
Big discounts for Angling Trust members!
Your Angling Trust membership entitles you to big savings on products and services from trade partners - and we've managed to secure some fantastic new offers for you, ideal for the New Year! There's huge savings on kitchen appliances, big discounts on dozens of top clothing brands, offers on fishing tackle ... and more. Don't forget, your membership also gives you 10% off day and season tickets at nearly 100 fishing venues, free £10m public liability insurance and entry to Angling Trust only fishing matches.

Big names lined up for Northern Angling Show

We're gearing up for the Northern Angling Show in the new year which features a huge range of equipment, exclusive show deals and talks and presentations by celebrity anglers including Dean Macey, Ali Hamidi and Adam Rooney. The show is being held on the weekend of February 24th & 25th at Manchester's Event City.
Click here for more details and tickets
Four new sea fish catches ratified as British records
Four claims for record-size fish have been ratified by the British Record Fish Committee, including Geoff LePage's thin-lipped grey mullet caught at St Peter Port, Guernsey (pictured above). Read more
'Chronic' pollution of rivers caused by insecticides
The first analysis of new monitoring data reveals that British rivers are heavily contaminated with neonicotinoid insecticides. Half of the sites monitored in England exceed chronic pollution limits and two rivers are acutely polluted. Read more
Don't forget to keep logging your sightings of cormorants
The Angling Trust has launched Cormorant Watch 2 to support our campaign for new measures to protect rivers and lakes from fish-eating birds. Please record sightings of cormorants, goosanders and red-breasted mergansers on the Cormorant Watch 2 website.
How to log your sightings
Help us challenge increase in EA permit charges to carry out work on rivers
The Angling Trust needs your help to challenge proposals by the Environment Agency which could severely damage the ability of angling clubs and others to improve the habitat of their local rivers for fish. The Agency has published a consultation which proposes increases to the charges for permits to carry out habitat improvement work such as angling clubs and rivers trusts have been doing for years. For example, an EA permit to place woody debris into the river channel currently costs £50 but would increase to £764. We're hoping as many people as possible reply to the consultation which closes on January 26th.
Click here for suggested response

Fishery faces legal action over sign banning 'Polish and Eastern Bloc' anglers
A fundraising campaign to fight a racial discrimination case against a fishery owner has reached £10,000 towards its target. The owner of Field Farm fishery in Oxfordshire – which has no connection with fisheries of the same name in Cheshire or Suffolk – has erected a sign banning anglers from Poland and Eastern Europe. Rado Papiewski, who runs the Angling Trust’s Building Bridges project, is challenging the sign and has the support of the Equality and Human Rights Commission and the Trust.
Read more and donate
News from Fish Legal

Concern over cattle crossings
Fish Legal is dealing with an increasing number of cases where farmers have created new crossings over rivers for cattle and machinery. This ultimately leads to severe environmental damage including sedimentation as well as the inevitable erosion of banks and river beds. Read more
Competition NewsNew final venue for RiverFestAfter five fantastic years on the River Wye, the final of the RiverFest competition will be moving to a new venue in 2018 - the River Severn at Shrewsbury.
The big money event, with a top prize of £13,000, will culminate in a two-day final on the Quarry and County Ground sections. Read more

Not yet a member? Please join the Trust today

The Angling Trust represents anglers and protects fishing. The more anglers who join, the louder our voice becomes. By becoming a member, you help fund our work to promote angling and its future, to fight for better fish stocks in both the marine and freshwater environment and to campaign against threats to angling. Membership of the Angling Trust runs for a year from the date of joining - and you'll also receive great membership benefits including £10m public liability insurance, discounts on products and services, and at least 10% off day and season tickets at almost 100 fisheries.
The Angling Trust is the united national representative body for all angling in England and Wales. It is united in a collaborative relationship with Fish Legal, a separate membership association that uses the law to protect fish stocks and the rights of its members throughout the UK. Joint membership packages with Fish Legal are available for individuals, clubs, fisheries, riparian owners and other categories. Please find out more.

Angling Trust Limited is a company limited by guarantee, company number 05320350
Angling Trust & Fish Legal, Eastwood House, Rainbow Street, Leominster, HR6 8DQ
Telephone: 01568 620447

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