£100,000 cash boost to maintain surge in fishing tackle licence sales
As sales of fishing rod licences in England and Wales rocket past the million mark, a £100,000 initiative has been announced to maintain the surge in participation.
Proceeds from the sales of licences will go towards the Get Fishing Fund, a scheme designed to encourage more people to give angling a go for the first time or encourage those back into the sport.
The scheme was announced by the Environment Agency (EA), the body that is responsible for licence sales in the region, and the Angling Trust. Grants of up to £3,000 will be available for small-scale projects and up to £5,000 for larger ones. The funding will help to deliver angling participation events, including any additional equipment needed to ensure fisheries are following safety guidelines, PPE and signage It will also cover the cost of fishing equipment, terminal tackle and bait alongside event resources, including promotional material, gazebos and basic storage facilities.
The Environment Agency says: “The easing of lockdown in May led to a huge increase in the popularity of fishing as people sought the wellbeing benefits that the sport can offer. The new buzz around angling looks set to continue with the latest rod licence sales currently showing more than 900,000 people having bought or renewed their fishing licence since April this year and 100,000 new anglers taking up the sport.
“The additional income has allowed the agency to offer increased investment to support projects that will run safe angling participation events through 2021.”
Graeme Storey, Fisheries Manager for the Environment Agency, added: “The Get Fishing Fund will support organisations to put on a range of fishing activities to encourage new anglers through the 2021 season. We are always looking for ways to support our angling community and the Environment Agency has invested £1.5m of the additional income from this year’s licence sales back into projects that improve fisheries. The increased interest in fishing over the summer proves that people are not only rediscovering angling, but more people are trying it for the first time. We want to see this continue and hope that these new projects will encourage more people to give fishing a go.”
Clive Copeland, Head of Participation at the Angling Trust added: “We work with a great network of coaches, clubs and fisheries across the country which this fund will help, but this also a fantastic opportunity for new partners to get involved in angling participation too. We’ve worked with the Environment Agency to make this a short, easy process and we’ve got friendly staff with lots of experience ready to help anyone who needs it.”
The Get Fishing Fund is not only available to angling clubs, coaches and fisheries but also to non-angling organisations such as schools, local authorities or charities based in England and Wales.