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Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009

Section 195: Regulation of nets and other fishing gear

501.Section 3 of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 enables the Ministers (now the Secretary of State and the devolved administrations) to make an order in relation to relevant British fishing boats registered in the UK applying restrictions to nets and other fishing gear in respect of their construction, design, material and size. An order under this section may be made so as to apply only in relation to fishing for specified descriptions of sea fish, specified methods of fishing, and specified areas or periods.

502.Section 3(2) provides that an order may be made to extend to nets and fishing gear carried within British fishery limits (excluding the Scottish zone) by Scottish fishing boats, fishing boats registered outside the UK and unregistered boats. In addition to other matters, section 3(3) and (4) provide for exemptions from the restrictions imposed by orders under this section to be made in relation to fishing boats. Section 3(5) creates offences for fishing in contravention of any orders made under this section.

503.Section 3 does not allow restrictions to apply equally to persons fishing from the shore as to persons fishing from a boat. Section 3 is amended so that restrictions of this type may be made by order in respect of persons fishing from the shore of England and Wales. That section is also amended to create new offences for any person fishing from the shore in contravention of any such restrictions and to allow for orders to exempt persons from the restrictions imposed. The power to make orders using the new provisions would be exercisable by the Secretary of State as regards England and the Welsh Ministers as regards Wales.

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