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NEWS


Bass fi shing reprieve - Angling Trust promises to deliver accuracy to protect the market


1 B


ritish sea anglers have avoided a six month ban on bass fi shing after


the European Commission announced fi nal measures for beleaguered bass stocks. The package of measures for 2018 have been produced in response to advice from the International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (ICES) which shows that the Northern European bass stock is crashing. Catch and release angling for bass all year round can continue with the prospect of a recreational bag limit in the second half of 2018 depending on a data review of the updated ICES advice in March. The Angling Trust has also vowed to work closely with the trade after controversial comments were made in last month’s Tackle & Guns. The Angling Trust quotes that there


1


Bass fi shing’s still allowed! But it’s all catch (photo) and release for now...


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Dave Barham’s comments caused ructions with the Angling Trust - but now at least the trade is talking!


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Angling Trust’s Head of Marine - David Mitchell


2 10 | Tackle & Guns | February 2018


are 884,000 sea anglers in England and Wales, a fi gure that rises to 1.15m for the whole of the UK. The fi gures have been disputed by many in the trade who proclaim that the true number of sea anglers is, in fact, much smaller, citing the true fi gure to be closer to 250,000.


Meanwhile, the Angling Trades Association estimates sea angling to be worth around £60 million (according to


Organisation acknowledges debate over numbers but urges collaboration between trade and angling bodies in order to achieve better results for sea angling.


latest 2015 report) at retail – around 11 per cent of total fi shing tackle sales. David Mitchell, Head of Marine for the Angling Trust, told T&G: “We have always used fi gures on sea angling that have been supplied to us via Defra’s own Sea Angling 2012 report, which was released in 2013. The report is the best available and most thorough research ever conducted into sea angling in England and many of the results tie in with those of previous studies from across the UK. “We estimate that in the UK there


are around 1.15m members of the pubic who have been fi shing at least once in the last 12 months and would consider themselves to be anglers. “We acknowledge that there may be a discrepancy between the trade and some of the fi gures used by the Angling Trust. The trade needs accurate and meaningful statistics to make business decisions and we need accurate information to successfully lobby for improvements in our sport. It’s vital that both the trade and the Trust are in agreement about what the fi gures are and how they are used.” Meanwhile T&G has uncovered


more information on the sea fi shing market. Using statistics gained from


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TGI (Target Group Index) it can reveal that a massive 1.043m people in the UK have fi shed in the sea over the past 12 months – with 324,000 classing themselves as sea anglers that fi sh on a regular basis. Figures that correlate roughly with both the Angling Trust and the trade’s view on angling numbers.


The Angling Trust is planning to


create an action group made up of retailers, trade members, scientists and researchersto push this forward with immediate effect and to identify how research could be improved. T&G will report on this further after the fi rst meeting, which is expected to be late in February.


We want to hear your views! Are the Angling Trust doing aenough for sea fi shing, or any form of fi shing for that matter? Let us know... drop us a line at:


nick@tandgmagazine.com www.tandgmagazine.com


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