Pres­sure mounts on li­cence cheats

Angling Times (UK) - - WELCOME -

A SCHEME aimed at help­ing to catch rod li­cence dodgers and poach­ers is set to dou­ble in size in the com­ing months af­ter it was in­un­dated with new ap­pli­ca­tions.

En­vi­ron­ment Agency of­fi­cials con­tinue to strug­gle with the mam­moth task of polic­ing fish­eries, but their ef­forts have been given a boost thanks to the ex­pan­sion of the Vol­un­tary Bailiff Ser­vice.

First pi­loted in the South East, the project was cre­ated to help in­crease the num­ber of pa­trols on the bank. Those in­volved are given pro­fes­sional train­ing to help com­bat angling crime.

Now, fol­low­ing a suc­cess­ful trial, the VBS has been given the go-ahead to be rolled out na­tion­wide. And Angling Trust staff who set up the ser­vice have now been over­whelmed by the num­ber of fish­er­men who want to get in­volved.

Trust na­tional en­force­ment man­ager Dilip Sarkar said: “The VBS is em­pow­ers an­glers to sup­port the EA, pro­tect fish and fish­eries, and pos­i­tively in­flu­ence rod li­cence com­pli­ance.

“We have 217 ex­ist­ing vol­un­teers and, with in­duc­tions ev­ery au­tumn and spring, that num­ber could quite eas­ily dou­ble within the year.”

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