Fishing summit to tackle East Coast problems –

Fishing summit to tackle East Coast problems Published:  05 October, 2009

SOME of the problems facing the East Coast fishing industry will be highlighted at a major conference in Yorkshire this week.

The annual conference of the North Yorkshire and Cleveland Coastal Forum is meeting at Saltburn-by-the-Sea on Thursday in what is seen as a key gathering of fishing community representatives in a part of the country experiencing difficulties.

These include the effects of prohibited trawl areas, especially in Filey and Whitby, as well as how the inshore fishing community can work to protect the coastal environment.

But there are also wider worries including the decline of fish landings at ports such Scarborough and Whitby. A leading Scarborough merchant recently complained that he was being forced to travel to Grimsby for supplies because there is not enough locally, although it is thought unlikely that this issue will be addressed in what is expected to be a largely technical conference.

There will, however, be a number of soapbox sessions when delegates can raise anything they wish.

Dr Magnus Johnson, of the University of Hull Scarborough campus, will talk about the inshore fishing community and how they work together and interact with coastal ecology, while three key speakers from Newcastle University will discuss the impact on fish of prohibited trawl areas, focusing on the areas of Filey and Whitby.

Forum chairman Godfrey Allanson said: ‘The fishing industry has become a hot topic on the national agenda lately as a result of the development of new bills, such as the Marine and Coastal Access Bill.’