A Christ­mas present for Fi­ley fish­er­men

Gov­ern­ment plans to ban fish­ing in July and Au­gust have been dropped

The Scarborough News - - FILEY & HUNMANBY MERCURY - By Martina Moscariello [email protected] Twit­ter: @m__­moscariello

Plans to pro­tect salmon stocks which could have had dev­as­tat­ing con­se­quences on Fi­ley’s fish­ing in­dus­try have been dropped.

Ear­lier this year the En­vi­ron­ment Agency an­nounced it was look­ing to in­tro­duce new rules to ban fish­ing ac­tiv­i­ties in July and Au­gust, the two most fruit­ful months for Fi­ley fish­er­men.

The gov­ernemt said the move would pro­tect “vul­ner­a­ble” salmon which get caught up in the nets but peo­ple in Fi­ley felt that could mean the end of their fish­ing tra­di­tion.

How­ever, thanks to the de­ter­mi­na­tion of the town’s fish­er­men who have been cam­paign­ing against the new rules, plans have now changed.

Fish­er­man Rex Har­ri­son said: “We have been told that next year we can con­tinue fish­ing un­til July and then in Au­gust we’ll try these new nets, which have a very, very low im­pact on the en­vi­ron­ment.

“Be­lieve it or not, we’re not in­ter­ested in salmon, it’s sea trout that we’re af­ter.”

The new T nets will al­low salmon that get ac­ci­den­tally caught to swim out.

Fi­ley MP Kevin Hollinrake, who had also been sup­port­ing the fish­er­men’s cause, said: “I wel­come the de­ci­sion that fish­ing can con­tinue all the way till the end of Au­gust with these new nets that don’t catch salmon at all.

“If we can demon­strate that that works then we can se­cure the long-term fu­ture of the fish­ing in­dus­try in Fi­ley and the li­cences that are due to ex­pire in 2022, we can make them per­ma­nent so that they can con­tinue to be passed on from gen­er­a­tion to gen­er­a­tion.”

Fish­er­men on Coble Land­ing recog­nise that the good out­come of their cam­paign is also down to the thou­sands of peo­ple who sup­ported them along the way.

Rex added: “We’d like to say thank you to all those who sup­ported us, who sent let­ters and signed the pe­ti­tion. We’re 100% be­hind ex­per­i­ment­ing with the new nets.” This year’s Flam­bor­ough Fire Fes­ti­val is set to be the most spec­tac­u­lar so far – with a Vik­ing long­ship burnt in the new arena.

The New Year’s Eve ex­tra­van­ganza has at­tracted thou­sands of vis­i­tors to the vil­lage in each of the past three years and this time there will be a ‘sea of flames’ around the long­ship, a torch­light pro­ces­sion and fire­balls.

To ac­com­mo­date more spec­ta­tors, the arena has been moved to the vil­lage green which will be dec­o­rated with coloured lights and burn­ing torches.

Or­gan­iser Jane Em­mer­son said: “This year the fes­ti­val will be a blaze of fire, with fire­balls, fire torches, a torch­light pro­ces­sion fol­lowed by a fire­works spec­tac­u­lar at mid­night.

“It’s go­ing to be an amaz­ing night in Flam­bor­ough on New Year’s Eve and we hope ev­ery­one will come along and join in and be amazed.”

The fes­ti­val is held in aid of lo­cal com­mu­nity groups and char­i­ties with a do­na­tion asked for at the gate.

From left, Fi­ley fish­er­men Matthew Wilkins, Jamie Richard­son, Yogi Cam­mish with dog Jack, and Rex Har­ri­son. Pic­ture: Richard Pon­ter 180720d

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