THERE was nothing fishy about Bognor Regis and Littlehampton MP Nick Gibb’s latest trip along the coastal waters of Littlehampton.
Mr Gibb was given an insightful lesson about the vital work of the Sussex Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, which operates to protect the sea along much of the south, including Littlehampton.
Mr Gibb was given a tour on the organisation’s patrol vessel, the Watchful, as well as having an opportunity to meet some of the volunteers and staff with the company.
While on the boat, he was shown the sort of work the Shoreham-based organisation does to help protect marine life across the area.
Speaking about his trip, Mr Gibb said: “It has been a fascinating morning to see the scientific work along with the work to see that inshore fish stocks are being managed in a proper manner.
“It is not easy for fishermen, with about 15 commercial vessels working from Littlehampton. I can understand they have issues and concerns.
“I admire them for what they do, at times in some very unpleasant conditions. Sussex IFCA is working hard to protect and conserve our fishing grounds for future generations.”
Tim Dapling, chief fisheries and conservation officer said: “We have had a good opportunity to describe the fisheries and current issues concerning the Littlehampton area. We were able to demonstrate, with the help of Kathryn Nelson our research officer, some of our equipment including a simple drop-down camera we use to quickly identify seabed type and habitats before conducting more extensive video surveys. This type of equipment gives us an opportunity to work closely with the fishing community by enabling them to be directly involved in collecting marine information in the areas they fish.”