Whitehall’s eco-zealots are threatening the livelihoods of families who have fished off Holy Island for 1,000 years

Defra, the Whitehall department responsible for fishing, proposes to create a Highly Protected Marine Area of 50 square miles covering the island and parts of the nearby Farne Islands that will have the effect of banning fishing. ‘It will wipe us out and destroy Holy Island as a living and working community,’ says Shaun Brigham, 55, who has been fishing these waters since leaving school at the age of 15. ‘All that’s here is tourism and fishing – so take the fishing away and what would be left? Defra talks about ‘rewilding the sea’ but has produced no evidence that anything here needs rewilding.’ On the contrary, stocks of lobster and brown and velvet crab – which are the only sea-life that can be fished in what is already a highly regulated industry – are greater than they have been for decades, not least because it’s in the long-term interests of the fishermen to abide by strict sustainability rules. >click to read< 13:58

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