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Advice for individual anglers

Our guidance for anglers on how to resume fishing safely during the COVID-19 health pandemic. These guidelines are designed to help you prepare for phase one of making angling compliant with current Covid-19 regulations.

Last updated: 02 June 2020

Revised guidelines

For Freshwater Anglers

 

GETTING TO YOUR FISHING VENUE

You should travel to fishing venues on your own or with members of your household – abide by current guidelines on social distancing whilst fishing.

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING

Maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from other people (unless members of your household) in line with government guidance.

FOLLOW TRAVEL GUIDELINES

Only travel based on what is allowed under current Government guidelines.

WHO YOU CAN FISH WITH

You can fish with members of your household or up to 5 other people outside your household – stick to social distancing guidelines at all times.

MATCH FISHING

The Head of Sports Participation at DCMS agreed that the new Angling Trust best practice guidelines were ‘sensible’ and could now be issued as the basis for a safe resumption of match fishing in England from May 25th.

PEG SPACING

For match fishing, we favour leaving peg spacing to the common sense of match organisers. A 15 metre space would be preferable for pleasure fishing and it is the standard on our river matches but we recognise there are venues where this is impractical.

SHARING OF FISHING TACKLE

No sharing of fishing tackle or other items under current guidance. 

IF YOU HAVE COVID-19 SYMPTOMS

Do not leave home if you have symptoms of Covid-19 and follow Government advice on self-isolation.

TACKLE SHOPS

The Angling Trust was unsuccessful in attempts to persuade the government to allow the reopening of tackle shops to coincide with the resumption of angling on May 13th. It now looks as iF they will be reopening on June 15th. Tackle shops are able to carry on trading by remote ordering (online, phone text or post).

CHECK BEFORE TRAVELLING

Many clubs & fisheries are using booking systems. Check you are permitted to fish before travelling. Fishing without permission is illegal.

PRACTICE GOOD HYGIENE

Use hand sanitiser before and after touching locks, gates etc. Disposable gloves and use of face masks where appropriate are recommended.

READ CLUB / FISHERY NOTICES

Pay careful attention to club & fishery notices – if you are unsure speak to a venue for guidance. 

NIGHT FISHING

Following the government statement of May 13th 2020 and the accompanying guidelines from the DCMS, fishing at night in England is currently permissible.

USE OF KEEPNETS

Following the return of match fishing to the new COVID compliant best practice guidelines the Angling Trust has revised the overall guidance in respect of no longer discouraging the use of keepnets.

KAYAK & BOAT FISHING

Following government approval for water sports to resume, we can clarify that this includes solo boat and kayak fishing, and shared boat fishing on both sea and freshwater with household members or up to 5 other people where social distancing can be maintained.

SHARING OF FISHING POSITIONS

No sharing of fishing positions / pegs except by members of the same household.

FISHING LICENCE

All freshwater anglers must be in possession of the relevant Environment Agency Rod Fishing Licence.

CLOSE SEASON

Please remember that the coarse fishing close season for rivers and some stillwaters remains in place until June 16th.

 Revised Guidelines

For Saltwater Anglers

 

GETTING TO YOUR FISHING VENUE

You should travel to fishing venues on your own or with members of your household – abide by current guidelines on social distancing whilst fishing.

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING

Maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from other people (unless members of your household) in line with government guidance.

FOLLOW TRAVEL GUIDELINES

Only travel based on what is allowed under current Government guidelines.

PERMITTED FISHING

Fishing from beach and shore is ok, along with small scale private boat fishing – provided you adhere to social distancing guidelines. Night fishing in England is currently permissible.

PRACTICE GOOD HYGIENE

Use hand sanitiser before and after touching locks, gates etc. Disposable gloves and use of face masks where appropriate are recommended.

READ HARBOUR / COUNCIL NOTICES

Pay careful attention to harbour and local council notices – if unsure seek guidance.

WHO YOU CAN FISH WITH

You can fish with members of your household or up to 5 other people outside your household – stick to social distancing guidelines at all times.

COMPETITION FISHING

The Head of Sports Participation at DCMS agreed that the new Angling Trust best practice guidelines were ‘sensible’ and could now be issued as the basis for a safe resumption of match fishing in England from May 25th.

KAYAK AND BOAT FISHING

Following government approval for water sports to resume, we can clarify that this includes solo boat and kayak fishing, and shared boat fishing with members of your household or up to 5 other people where social distancing can be maintained.

SHARING OF FISHING TACKLE

No sharing of fishing tackle or other items under current guidance. 

SHARING OF FISHING POSITIONS

No sharing of fishing positions / pegs except by members of the same household.

FISHING FROM PIERS AND BREAKWATERS

Avoid fishing from piers and breakwaters if you have other alternatives, to avoid over-crowding.

PEG SPACING

For shore match fishing, we favour leaving peg spacing to the common sense of match organisers but recommend a 15 metre space. A 15 metre space would be preferable for pleasure fishing.

NIGHT FISHING

Following the government statement of May 13th 2020 and the accompanying guidelines from the DCMS, fishing at night in England is currently permissible.

TACKLE SHOPS

The Angling Trust was unsuccessful in attempts to persuade the government to allow the reopening of tackle shops to coincide with the resumption of angling on May 13th. It now looks as iF they will be reopening on June 15th. Tackle shops are able to carry on trading by remote ordering (online, phone text or post).

IF YOU HAVE COVID-19 SYMPTOMS

Do not leave home if you have symptoms of Covid-19 and follow Government advice on self-isolation.

Further support

North Region

Daniel Williams

Darren Birch

South Region

Dean Asplin

Clive Copeland

East Region

David Munt

James Roche

West Region

Dave Evans

Richard Hadley

Regional Enforcement Managers

MIDLANDS

Kevin Pearson

kevin.pearson@anglingtrust.net

07495 433620

NORTH WEST

Dave Lees

david.lees@anglingtrust.net

07495 433618

SOUTH WEST

Nevin Hunter

nevin.hunter@anglingtrust.net

07495 433622

NORTH EAST

Mark Gregory

mark.gregory@anglingtrust.net

07947 893664

 

BUILDING BRIDGES

Jan Kansik

Janusz.kansik@anglingtrust.net

07495 433615

SOUTH EAST

Dave Wilkins

david.wilkins@anglingtrust.net

07495 433623

EAST

Paul Thomas

paul.thomas@anglingtrust.net

07495 433621

Our latest updates

The Angling Trust worked with leading anglers and fisheries in the match angling community to deliver new guidelines to bring competition fishing in line with COVID-19 procedures. These have now received Government agreement to allow match fishing to resume.

Read the guidelines

Following the government's decision to allow competitive angling to resume, the Angling Trust has drawn up new guidelines to bring sea angling competitions in line with Covid-19 procedures.

Read the Sea Competition guidelines

Fishing to start again from 13 May 2020 - find out more and read our guidance for anglers, clubs, fisheries, coaches & guides.

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Clubmate to help angling clubs deal with member renewals during COVID-19 outbreak.

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In this Lines On The Water blog, Paul Coulson from the Institute of Fisheries Management (IFM) offers some important advice for fisheries.

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We've been working with leading fly fishing anglers and fisheries in the game competition community to draw up new guidelines to bring game competition fishing in line with COVID-19 procedures. These have now received Government agreement to allow match game fishing to resume.

Read the guidelines

Following further easing of Covid-19 restrictions, the Angling Trust and the Professional Boatman's Association have produced best practice guidelines for the safe resumption of Charter Boat fishing.

Read the guidelines

Find out more about our proposal to Government to get us fishing safely again.

Find out more

Sport England Community Emergency Fund to provide financial support for community sport organisations including angling clubs.

Find out more and apply

The Federation of Small Businesses has a great resource hub for small business owners and the self-employed.

Find out more

 

Following the government's decision to allow competitive angling to resume, the Angling Trust has drawn up new guidelines to bring lure angling competitions in line with Covid-19 procedures.

Read Lure Competitions Guidelines

 

Night Fishing: National guidance for anglers, angling clubs and fisheries issued by the Angling Trust on 14th May, 2020.

Download Night Fishing Guidance

Check our new site fishingbuzz.co.uk - curated, daily content for you to feed your love for fishing whilst indoors!

View resources

 

Our FAQs for clubs, fisheries and other angling organisations have been updated and now includes a downloadable Accreditation Form for club bailiffs and volunteers.

Read the FAQs

More information about the Self Employment Income Support scheme and how to make a claim.

Find out more