Fisheries Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:10 pm on 21st November 2018.

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Photo of Charles Walker Charles Walker Chair, Procedure Committee 5:10 pm, 21st November 2018

The press release that I quoted mentioned Stewart Ward, who is a constituent of my right hon. Friend Mr Francois, who was sitting here a few moments ago. Stewart Ward lost his business. He was a charter skipper in Essex, and he wrote to me to explain why it happened. When people pay their £40 or so to go out on a fishing trip, they like to keep a fish or two, which is perfectly reasonable. It is a natural thing for someone to want to bring their catch home—it is part of the harvester in many of us. However, his clients and guests were not allowed to keep the fish, and they could not justify spending the money if they were not able to bring part—not all—of their catch home. It has had a damaging—some would say catastrophic—effect on the recreational angling fleet and those who enjoy recreational angling.

I have spoken for too long. I think I have made the case for fish, and I hope that we in this Chamber can continue to make the case for fish long after we have left the EU in a few months’ time.