“I was charged £45, but didn’t receive a confirmation or a receipt, let alone a licence. ”
Tof anglers have purchased overpriced rod licences from third-party websites, which has led to another official warning about the practice.
The Environment Agency can’t provide an exact number, but regards '10,000 anglers' as a reasonable estimate for 2017-18.
Some anglers have paid as much as double the price for a rod licence, while others have had to wait a long time for their licence to arrive in the post.
Kevin Austin, deputy director of Agriculture, Fisheries and the Natural Environment, said: “These websites are not endorsed by the EA. For peace of mind, make sure you visit GOV.UK to buy your fishing licence.
“Money from fishing licences is used for improving habitats for fish, facilities for anglers, dealing with fish kills, fish restocking, invasive species eradication, and working with partners to encourage people to take up fishing.
“When customers purchase from GOV.UK, they’ll receive a reference number, allowing them to go fishing immediately.
“Customers who use Angler’s Mail
third-party websites may not get this number immediately, and will be considered to be fishing illegally if they go without a valid reference number or licence.
"To purchase a licence, always use the official link at: www.gov.uk/fishing-licences
"Alternatively, you can call 0344 800 5386 or visit your local Post Office."
One Angler’s Mail reader, Alan Oakley, has warned of the dangers after he paid an extra £15 for a ‘service charge’ to a rogue website, but didn’t even receive a licence.
Birmingham-based Alan reader, alan oakley
said: “I was charged £45, but didn’t receive a confirmation or a receipt, let alone a licence.
“My bank repaid me the money after two months, and then I went to a Post Office to get my licence.”
The EA are powerless to shut these legal websites down, as they are just adding a surcharge on for their ‘service’.
It is estimated that an incredible 10,000 anglers paid over the odds in the past year for their rod licences. housands