On Wednesday 4 November the Angling Trust released a statement with guidelines for the second lockdown. Under the new rules fishing is still allowed as long as anglers follow the guidelines which can be found on the Angling Trust website here: https://anglingtrust.net/2020/11/04/fish-safely-locally-and-respect-the-rule-of-two-during-lockdown/ or below.
Jon Cruddas MP who is a member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Angling welcomed the news that fishing could continue. During the first lockdown Jon along with other members of the APPG lobbied government to allow relaxation of the rules so that people could still fish if they followed the safety guidelines.
Jon said: “Lockdown is going to be a difficult time for everyone, and as a keen angler I am pleased that fishing can continue, not least for the positive impact it has on health and wellbeing. We have some excellent fishing lakes across Dagenham and Rainham so I would encourage anglers to fish local, make sure you follow the guidelines on who can fish with you and above all stay safe.”
How to Fish
The regulations are clear and you can only leave home to fish with members of your own household, your support bubble or with one other individual. The Rule of Six is now effectively the Rule of Two for most of us. The tightening of the rules on ‘gatherings’ means that match fishing or any other organised fishing event is prohibited by law during lockdown.
Where to Fish
Angling is deemed a permissible form of ‘outdoor recreation’, and a lawful reason to leave home. It can take place, without time limits, within the provision allowing people “to visit a public outdoor space for the purposes of open-air recreation”.
Fisheries are not on the published list of businesses that the government has ordered to close and there is no reason that they should do so providing that they operate in accordance with the rules.
Travelling to fish
Whilst the government have chosen not to write their travel guidance into law we are urging anglers to respect the advice which states that it is permissible to travel in order to: “spend time or exercise outdoors – this should be done locally wherever possible, but you can travel to do so if necessary (for example, to access an open space)”
Put simply, you can travel to go fishing but long journeys should be avoided ‘wherever possible’.
How long to fish
There are no limits on the time that can be spent on outdoor recreation which means that anglers are able to continue fishing into and through the hours of darkness providing the other rules are observed.