Friday, December 12, 2008

New pike fishing permit for Horsey Mere

A new permit system will be run on a trial basis when Norfolk's Horsey Mere opens up in March for the last two weeks of season.

Instead of buying a day ticket from the bailiff's boat, two week permits will be issued in advance at a cost of £30 per boat.

Today the Thurne Fisheries website said: "The purpose of this is to facilitate both easier access and reduce the need to visit each boat and collect permit fees, this often risking the disturbance of the areas being fished and causing friction with the anglers. The plan is to issue a 14 day period permit at a fee of £30.00 per boat.

"This will allow the preregistered boat to fish without the inconvenience of a bailiff cruising through the fishing areas disturbing the swim, to collect permit fees. To see this work effectively it would require the prior registration of the boat to be used and for the registration number/name of the boat to be clearly displayed whilst fishing. Boats using this system will immediately be recognisable and will not be subject to a visit from the bailiff.

"If all users would make use of this system it will ensure that the whole broad is allowed to settle once everyone is fishing and optimise the chance of picking up a fish."

Click here for more information and to download an application form.

Only limited access to the Horsey is permitted during the winter months to avoid disturbance to over-wintering wildfowl.

There was friction earlier this year, when anglers were accused of fishing areas set aside as wildfowl refuges by Natural England.

But shortly after threatened prosecutions made the papers, it emerged Natural England and the broads Authority - which was so quick to condemn anglers for disturbing the birds - had already discussed secret plans to abandon the Upper Thurne system to the sea, robbing the birds of their habitat forever.

As anger erupted over plans to allow the sea to flood Horsey, Hickling Broad, the Martham Broads and Heigham Sound, anglers were told no further action would be taken.