Archive | August, 2015

Big Plans for the Future

26 Aug

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The Environment Agency recently gave the Angling Trust a huge vote of confidence by appointing us, through a formal competitive tendering process, to be the delivery organisation for a major new contract delivering angling services over the next 2 – 4 years, funded by rod licence income, building on work we have been carrying out in partnership with the Agency over the past few years.

The work will involve an expansion of our programmes to get more people fishing and buying rod licences, particularly through our Family Fishing initiative, and appointment of a new angling promotion officer to bring angling to new audiences.  We will be developing the angling forums we hold in each of 8 regions, to give anglers the opportunity to have their say, and to get involved in initiatives to improve fishing.  We will be expanding the Angling Improvement Fund to support clubs and fisheries, improve facilities and protect fish stocks, and offering expert advice about other funding.  We will soon be announcing the successful bids from the latest round of the Fisheries Improvement Fund, which this time focussed on getting kids fishing and protecting fisheries from predation.  See the list of successful applicants HERE

Martin Salter Addressing a Regional Forum

Martin Salter Addressing a Regional Forum

We are also hoping to roll out the highly successful Voluntary Bailiff Service across the country from its initial pilot area of South East England and expanding our Building Bridges programme for migrant anglers.  We will continue to develop our relationship with the Police to fight illegal fishing and fish theft and our projects to deal with angling litter and invasive species like signal crayfish.  This new contract allows rod licence funds to go further, because the Angling Trust has unique access to match funding from organisations like Sport England and a huge network of volunteers.

Although winning the contract will help build a firm financial basis from which we can operate, the money must be spent on some very specific projects and we still need much more membership income to pay for representation, campaigns and legal action.  These things can only be funded by members and not the rod licence.  While Fish Legal made a substantial surplus in 2014-15 that will be reinvested, the Angling Trust had a corresponding loss.  Just a few thousand more members would give us much greater financial security and more funds to take on the many threats to our fish stocks and fishing.

It’s important to stress that the Trust will remain entirely independent from the Environment Agency despite this contractual arrangement and will continue to be effective in our wider role of the governing body for the sport of angling and champions of anglers rights.  We will work closely with the Agency to resolve issues and improve things which adversely affect angling but we will not shy away from challenging government and its agencies where this is needed.

Sign up for the FREE fortnightly e-newsletter from the Angling Trust and Fish Legal to get news from the world of fishing, top tips and special offers at www.anglingtrust.net/subscribe

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