Sea Angling Manifesto sets out how UK achieves world-class recreational fisheries

The Angling Trust wants sea anglers to experience unforgettable fishing supported by flourishing fisheries, thriving coastal communities and a restored marine environment. Our Sea Angling Manifesto sets out the actions needed to achieve world-class recreational fisheries for sea anglers and sustainable seas for all.

Now that recreational sea fishing is finally recognised as a stakeholder in UK fisheries management under the Fisheries Act (2020), we believe that it is time for the government to deliver for sea angling – to invest in the high social and economic value the angling sector brings to coastal communities and to establish world-class recreational fisheries by transitioning to ecosystem-based fisheries management and prioritising recreationally important species.

Recreational sea anglers have more opportunities than ever before to steer the future direction of our sector and UK fisheries. Sea angling makes a major contribution to the UK economy, particularly to often marginalised, disadvantaged and economically deprived coastal communities. As a sector, sea angling directly supports an estimated 15,000 jobs such as through tackle shops, angling guiding and coaching, charter boats and the tackle trade which are all supported by the £1.5 billion sea anglers are estimated to spend each year. It also directly supports our coastal communities by supporting local businesses like hotels and restaurants, often out of season, generating a direct impact of up to £847 million annually.

Today, our seas are a shadow of what they once were. Overfishing, pollution, climate change, habitat loss and invasive species all threaten our marine environment. Anglers are the eyes and ears for our seas. We are on the frontline of our changing ocean and working collaboratively with the sea angling community is integral to safeguarding the future of our marine environment.

The  next UK government – and devolved governments – must invest in sea angling, maximising the social and economic benefits to coastal communities that sea angling delivers and placing it at the heart of sustainable fisheries management.

It’s time for the government to deliver on their promises to sea anglers by prioritising the needs of entire coastal communities, not just the commercial fishing industry, and take ambitious action to recover our fish stocks to their former glory.

To achieve world-class recreational fisheries, we are calling on the next UK government to:

  • Invest in sea angling
  • Recognise and prioritise recreational species
  • Empower recreational sea anglers

Our Sea Angling Manifesto sets out the actions needed to capitalise on government recognition of the socio-economic value of recreational sea angling to coastal communities; invest in recreational sea angling infrastructure to inspire the next generation of sea anglers; and to rewrite fisheries management to support an ecosystem-based approach that recognises and prioritises recreationally important species.

If sea angling is to thrive, it is dependent on a healthy marine environment, prosperous coastal communities and investment into our sport. We cannot sit back and let them all deteriorate any longer.

Download a copy of our Sea Angling Manifesto

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