Save our fish and fishing industry

It was thoughtless of the Dutch to arrive in our waters with their huge factory ship the Margiris so close to the PM’s leaving date from the EU, as if to hoover up as much of our fish as possible before we leave.

This vessel can catch and process 250 tonnes a day. It was barred from Australia owing to its size and possible impact on their fishing ground. The ship and its nets are designed, we are told, to target pelagic species. The ship is guided by radar to the shoals, and we are assured the nets do not scrape the bottom damaging the sea bed. We are also told this vessel was fishing entirely legally under the rules of the EU’s Common Fishery Policy.

Other large factory ships with nets that do drag the bottom can do grave damage to the sea bed and the marine environment. These vessels can catch a lot of fish very quickly and may sometimes catch species of fish in low supply which we want to be left to allow recovery of stocks.

The practice of dragging heavy and strong nets across the sea, especially if close to the sea bed, can drag up many species you do not want to catch at the same time as the ones you wish to attract. If the net size is too small it can catch and kill young fish. The net can damage the sea bed and general environment if lowered too far.

Once we have left the EU we will be able to set our own standards for net size, size of vessel, and impact of fishing style on the marine environment. It is another great argument for just leaving on 31 October and for  not making our fish any part of continuing negotiations over our future trade relationship. Mrs May’s unpopular Withdrawal Agreement left our fish at risk.


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  1. Prigger
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:17 am | Permalink

    I remember the Dutch raid on the Medway in June 1667. They never stop.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:58 am | Permalink

      You must remember, that in return, the UK fleet will likely lose its right to fish in Dutch, Scandinavian, Belgian, French, Portuguese and Spanish waters etc., depending on the terms of various agreements.

      There will be winners and losers. What the net result will be seems unclear at best.

      • Original Richard
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

        MiC : Mrs. May’s proposed Withdrawal Treaty was described by Mr. Macron thus :

        “The UK will be trapped in a customs union after Brexit unless Downing Street offers European fishermen full access to British waters during the coming trade negotiations.”

        Which shows that Mr. Macron clearly believes the EU will be the losers if we regain control of our fishing grounds.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 5:57 am | Permalink

          France is not the only fishing nation, is it? Read my comment again.

          • NickC
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

            Martin, Original Richard said that Macron clearly believes the EU will be the losers. Not specifically France. Read His comment again.

      • Martin Bowden
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 8:21 am | Permalink

        ‘Net result’ ha ha!

      • libertarian
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 8:52 am | Permalink

        Martin in C

        But but but according to Margaret Howard and your other remainer friends the UK no longer has a fishing fleet.

        Therefore by having OUR OWN waters protected from over fishing we may be able to rebuild our fleet . THEN longer term we can negotiate individual agreements on other sectors

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:40 am | Permalink

      Perhaps it could be said that they stopped when William and Mary failed to produce an Anglo-Dutch heir to the English throne.

    • formula57
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:53 am | Permalink

      @ Prigger – Indeed, for the subsequent Treaty of Breda was followed by yet another Dutch War, as you doubtless recall.

      The whole business of the 17th century Dutch Wars was ignored by both sides in the Referendum.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

        And quite correctly so, as was the replacement of the Beaker People by the proto-Celts.

        • libertarian
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 9:02 am | Permalink


          No such people as proto celts or any type of celt , thats a Victorian invention. The Roman Keltoi were a small alpine tribe and the Gauls were also later referred to as celts .

          The indigenous population of the islands of Great(er) Britain where drawn from a post ice age Atlanic diaspora that is still prevalent in the DNA of modern populations of England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland

          Replacement theories are mostly discredited these days

        • NickC
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

          Martin, Except that many of our modern constitutional arrangements were put in place in the C17th, so it is relevant. Whereas the replacement of the Beaker People by the Celts isn’t.

    • Hope
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      There are many problems as you cite JR. Con Woman have published many articles about the failure of Mayhabs servitude plan, so have the Spectator, Lawyers for Britain to name but three, which we all now know was a plan to keep us in the EU by another treaty. Hence why Clarke , Letwin, Hammond and other EU fanatics voted for it.

      We were promised by Johnson her plan was Dead. It appears not. The control of the military has been given to the EU, signed on 18/11/2018 we read. Who will police our territorial waters if we do not control our military? Moreover why would the EU in control of our military allow it to prevent EU vessels in our Waters?

      Could you explain against your stated views please. There is nothing in Mayhabs servitude plan worth saving. Why is it being negotiated on?

      • NickC
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

        Hope, Perhaps because Boris is trying to regurgitate May’s surrender “deal” to fool Leaves and deflate Remain fanatics, leaving the Tories to pick up lukewarm Leaves and lukewarm Remains in the forthcoming general election?

  2. Mark B
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:27 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    They are, currently, operating legally as this is a shared EU resource. EU member countries are allocated a percentage each and each country allocates to various fishing vessels what amount it can catch. Hopefully all that is about to change.

    The recovery of our fishing grounds and their management is of primary importance to the UK. The then EEC deliberately created the CFP in order to steal our fishing grounds and ruin our fishing communities.

    Going forward I would like certain types of fishing a sizes of vessels, like the one mentioned above, banned from fishing in UK waters. I would like to see good sensible government policy on the management and preservation of UK marine life and the expansion of fishery protection via the Royal Navy. Nice Aircraft Carriers but something a but smaller, cheaper and more useful please. 😉

    • acorn
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:35 am | Permalink

      If this vessel was fishing legally in UK waters, where did it get its quota allocations from? Who sold out to this boat?

      • forthurst
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

        OK so according to acorn British fishermen are bone idle so even if they could earn a fat living fishing their ancestral fishing grounds because of the generosity of the CAP, they chose a short term profit instead.

        • acorn
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

          They are called “slipper skipers”. Sell your licence quota and stay onshore with your feet up.

          • forthurst
            Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

            Fishing quotas are garbage like carbon credits. If one English fisherman does not want to fish our ancestral fishing grounds, he can sell his trawler to someone who does. It should have nothing to do with Brussels or predatory Dutchmen which Englishman is fishing for our fish.

        • libertarian
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:14 pm | Permalink


          This trawler operates under a Lithuania flag but is Dutch owned . Lithuania had just 9 boats fishing these waters and last year they landed 18,865 tonnes of fish. I’m guessing their quotas are made up of Lithuanian and Dutch quota swaps .

          Cant be bothered to investigate further as the CFP quota swaps database on EU website is unreadable

      • Mark B
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 4:10 am | Permalink


        Sorry to get back to you so late.

        If you re-read my piece you will find it equally critical of our government as I am of the EU. It is a fact that the then EEC created the CFP ahead of the UK joining.

        There is no doubt that the UK fishing industry has been terribly mismanaged by both the UK and the EU. Greed rules ! But I said in my piece that I wanted smaller vessels. As you know, I am a strong believer in competition. I have always argued that markets should be free, open and and fair. We have monopoly laws and, I would like to see them applied to bigger holdings. I also believe that if you have acquired the rights to fish, no matter where you are flagged, then you should be able to do so. My belief is that these are UK territorial waters and that we should manage them.

    • margaret howard
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      Mark B

      ” to steal our fishing grounds and ruin our fishing communities.”

      Another Brexiteer myth. The fishing communities were ruined because their fishermen decided to sell off their quotas for a quick profit regardless of the long term consequences. Countries like Spain chose to invest and buy them up.

      Is there no end to this Brexiteer whinging and blaming everybody else but themselves?

      • Trader
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        No margaret, there is no end. It is ALWAYS someone else’s fault. Never the brexiters and their fantasies and ignorance of how thw world works

        • L Jones
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

          Your name ”Trader” gives you away. Obviously a Europhile. The EU and its practices couldn’t POSSIBLY be responsible for anything negative, could it?

          ”…. ignorance of how thw (sic) world works….” Perhaps it might be a good idea to do some research – the world works in a far different way than the EU. You people really must broaden your horizons.

      • Edward2
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

        You keep posting your propaganda Margaret despite on many occasions having been told your claim is complete nonsense.
        The unfair quotas imposed on the UK fishing industry were so bad that only a few larger fleets could survive.
        Others knew they faced a choice of going bankrupt or very reluctantly selling on their useless quotas and leaving the industry.

        For you to claim these businesses facing ruin after generations of brave and successful fishing out on rough, dangerous seas were selling out is an outrage.

      • libertarian
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:21 pm | Permalink


        You keep posting this BS .

        Greenpeace however just produced a report detailing the powerful British companies that control UK fishing. They identified just 24% of UK fishing is owned by Dutch/Spanish companies who acquired the rights by buying out British boats not but buying their quotas

        Is there no end to your endless stream of incorrect posts ?

      • forthurst
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

        The Spaniards were given grants to purchase brand new trawlers. British fishermen were allocated derisory quotas in order to make room in our ancestral fishing grounds for invading trawlers; British trawlermen, not being able to make a living from fishing, were then offered grants to scrap their trawlers.

        The problem, however, is not with the EU but with the Tory Party which has been an exclusively Remain party ever since Heath sold out our fishermen in exchange for being allowed to contribute vast sums of taxpayers money to subsidise French farmers.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

        Margaret Howard

        How come you are so ignorant. What you say is not what happened to British fishermen. They were sold down the river. Do some real research and stop getting your information from Facebook. Can you also try to be less anti British?

        • margaret howard
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

          Sorry, no Facebook for me. I like wiki though.

          As for being anti British nothing could be further from the truth. I don’t however belong to the ‘your country right or wrong’ brigade. Too much horror has been perpetrated by people hiding under that particular umbrella.

          • libertarian
            Posted October 9, 2019 at 7:10 pm | Permalink


            Whilst I agree that not everything done by this country is admirable or correct its laughable that you a big fan of Germany seem willing to overlook recent German behaviour but harp on about British atrocities 100 years earlier

            Maybe just stick to the present ?

  3. Here and Now
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:34 am | Permalink

    Great, so all we have to do now is to teach the fish to swin in our waters, not those of the EU. Anythoughts on that, mr expert?

    • None of the Above
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:48 am | Permalink

      You don’t know much about fish, do you?

    • Stephen J
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:53 am | Permalink

      Yes we will take our waters back…. FROM the EU!

      The very first political meeting that I attended was about saving our fishing waters, that was around 1995-7, A certain chap named Redwood was one of the main speakers, along with Lord Stoddard, Christopher Booker (?) and a couple of real fisherfolk.

      I found myself sitting next to Norman Lamont and because I was there, I appeared later that night on Newsnight, the camera seemed to spend forever on us, and I was pulling a sickie, so I was a bit worried.

      That was when I joined UKIP.

      • Stephen J
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

        Apologies, my point was to illustrate that Sir John has had pretty expert words and thoughts on that particular subject for a very long time.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:00 am | Permalink

      The fish will go to where the most nutrients and plankton are in the water. If we restore our fishing grounds, and make ‘no catch’ areas where fish can breed in peace, with undisturbed nurseries, then the fish numbers and diversity will increase dramatically in those and nearby areas.
      We can only have healthy waters and adequately protect them once outside of the EU.

      • James Bertram
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:19 am | Permalink

        ‘When fishing stops, the results are remarkable. On average, in 124 marine reserves studied around the world, some of which have been in existence for only a few years, the total weight of animals and plants has quadrupled since they were established. The size of the animals inhabiting them has also increased, and so has their diversity. In most cases the shift is visible within two to five years.’
        (p.248, Ch.13 Rewilding the Sea, from G. Monbiot’s book ‘Feral’.)

    • L Jones
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:12 am | Permalink

      Perhaps, HandN, you should read Facebook for your information. That should give you all the expert opinion you need.

    • dixie
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:20 am | Permalink

      Why is the Dutch ship in our waters?

    • NickC
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:47 am | Permalink

      Here and now, That’s silly. The fact that there are fish in the UK’s 200nm EEZ shows that those fish have not already migrated to EU waters. By definition. Moreover, your suggestion tacitly acknowledges that the EU fisheries policy is bad for fish stocks, otherwise it would not matter if the fish did migrate to the EU’s zone.

    • Know-Dice
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      Fish already like to swim in our waters, that’s why the factory ships are here hoovering them up.

      The implied insult is not necessary.

    • libertarian
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      Here & Now


      Dumbest post of the the week

    • Ben
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:49 am | Permalink

      Typical continuity Remain response: snarky, evasive, disingenuous, resentful, and factually inaccurate. (There are plenty of fish already in our waters, which is the whole point. I don’t doubt that you would love it if they moved elsewhere; then you would have “won”, which is more important than our nation’s interests, is it not?)

    • Shake n spear fish
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

      Yes, as Mrs Thatcher applauded fish n chip shops and was seen and heard eating majestically in a fish n chip restaurant so promoting most healthy eating indeed, supporting small businesses and industrial infrastructure we then got the veggie brigade, eyes dilated and with outside lineaments anaemic hue their grass and dandelion bakes in the shape of a fish.
      Recreate the market for fish. Ahoy: to be fishermen or not to be fishermen, that will not a question make. They will fish.

      • rose
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

        Mrs T’s favourite was haddock. “You can’t beat a nice bit of haddock.”

  4. Shirley
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    Sacrificing control of our fishing grounds was one of the worst aspects of joining the EEC. It has also been abused by the EU to the detriment of the UK.

    There will be much wailing and whining from those in the EU that lose access to UK waters. They will experience what our communities experienced for 40+ years. I hope Boris makes sure that our grounds are defended and managed well.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:52 am | Permalink

      Will all this happen aftet the 4 year transition period when we do nothing and transit nowhere. The time will be used to foist as much destruction on the UK as possible whilst we continue to pay handsomely.

      • tim
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

        Ian Wragg- YES time will be used to foist as much destruction on the UK as possible whilst we continue to pay handsomely. And how much damage have they already done! Endless male “asylume seekers” being flushed in to our country.

  5. Excalibur
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:44 am | Permalink

    ‘Thoughtless’, JR ? Pre-meditated self interest, I should say.

  6. E-Fishent
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:47 am | Permalink

    We have long needed a navy capable of intercepting small vessels in a measured way. One recalls the Cod Wars with Iceland where we had to deploy huge ships which obviously could not fire upon trawlers nor could they intercept them. Now there are regular drug trafficking boats, migrant boats, gun smuggling boats. We can expect more and genuine pirates from the EU nations after Brexit in our fishing grounds and engaged in smuggling whatever is taxed highly, or both, highly likely both. More severe penalties for such acts should be considered immediately by Parliament. Otherwise, every MP will be making a speech “It is long overdue that…” as per usual. Just expect European nations behaving badly. They never disappoint.

    • NickC
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:46 am | Permalink

      E-Fishent, Indeed when one of the previous incarnations of the European empire – the Roman Empire – (voluntarily) left Britain, the west coast of Great Britain was regularly raided by Irish pirates for slaves and plunder. Then, as now, our establishment forgot that responsibility is the price of power.

    • Lester beedell
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

      The Iranians seem to manage very well with fast patrol boats
      Perhaps we need something similar?

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 2:49 pm | Permalink


        Agreed, and a lot of them !

  7. Dominic
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    It wasn’t ‘thoughtless’, it was provocative.

    Wanted. Politicians who use the correct terms to describe what they see rather than the use of language filtered through a political prism

    Reply Part of the task of an elected politician in a democracy is to try to bring people together and reduce conflicts, not to divide people at every opportunity by strong or divisive language. As I am such a disappointment to you I suggest you post your comments elsewhere.

    • J Bush
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:22 am | Permalink

      Parliamentary sovereignty comes from the people who vote in a person to represent them, if they can’t do that, they should resign.

      I appreciate this would be Grievous for those dishonourable representatives who just want to keep their privileged position so they can overturn a democratic result they don’t agree with.

    • L Jones
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:09 am | Permalink

      Heard of irony, Dominic? Fits in well with diplomacy.
      Sir John is exactly right using words like this – it shows these governments up for what they are: vindictive and provocative.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:03 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply

      Sir John – I find your measured tones more effective than hyperbole for making the point on those subjects that you venture into.

    • Sit Joe Soap
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply:
      Duty is to speak the truth and since neither of you appear to know whether this action was thoughtless or provocative my suggestion is to leave the adverb at unnecessary and let the electorate reach their own conclusions.

      The point is that the fishing aspect is rarely covered by remain-led media, and that May’s surrender agreement, which your party in government wasted more than 2 years deliberating over is weak and watery in allowing this type of situation to continue unabated. Any new agreement needs to hand UK territorial waters back to the UK, just as much as keeping NI within the UK. Both are issues of sovereignty and both were handed to the EU on a plate by Mrs May.

    • NickC
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      Dominic, I have to agree with you that the arrival of the Dutch factory ship, the Margiris, in our fishing waters is provocative, and not thoughtless.

    • BillM
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      While political-speak dialogue is commendable, I believe it is time to fight fire with fire.
      Continual politeness is beginning to be a fault in our dealings with opposing forces. It is seen more as a weakness rather than an agreeable way to negotiate with a belligerent adversary.

    • Rule Britannia
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

      I’m surprised by the reply here – do you really want a blog where people only agree with you and with your approach?

      There are many candidates posting here who are more worthy of ire – such as remoaners who respond to almost every post with the same tripe every day, no matter how comprehensively dismantled. Why keep approving their posts?

      In this case, I tend to agree with Dominic, there are many people who like Trump, Farage and such political types because they tell it like it is. The left and remain camps have been spewing bile for decades and yet you don’t admonish them for their ‘failure to bring people together’. As voters, we got very tired of that and are happy to see people on the right starting to hit back.

      • Rule Britannia
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:37 pm | Permalink


        I was pleased to see your interview… a few weeks ago… a journalist (can’t remember who, but female), asked you a question and attempted to interrupt before you’d said more than a few words in response.

        You said something like “Excuse me, you asked me here to talk about and I do know quite a lot about economics so please allow me to reply”.

        She shut up and you got to say your piece. That was the highlight of the interview to the extent that I forgot the journo in question and even the subject being discussed – the insistence on being able to respond was eye-catching.

        I’d be happy to see more of that from people of ‘our’ viewpoint. The other side come across as caring more because they use emotive language and those who know little about the subject matter are more impressed by their passion than by any reasoned argument.

      • Sandra Cox
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

        I alway read Sir John’s diary, but rarely comment these days. However, I have to say that the last thing I’d want to see is Sir John parroting Richard North and chucking people like Dominic off his site for what appear to be mild comments.

        • steve
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:38 pm | Permalink


          To my knowledge Dominic hasn’t been chucked off anywhere, he was posting here very recently, as I recall since I always read his posts.

          I’d be very surprised.

    • Orion
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

      I am in complete agreement with you Dominic , speak your mind Sir John and stop all this smoke and mirrors politicaly correct Westminster speak We can see right through it ..

      • Pominoz
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:53 pm | Permalink


        Each of us is different and express their view in their own particular way. It is, however, very wrong and rather foolhardy to judge restraint and courtesy as weakness. I am quite sure that, when it is appropriate, Sir John has a sufficient command of the English language to deliver a ‘rapier thrust’ without resorting to insult.

    • steve
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

      JR: “Reply [To Dominic] Part of the task of an elected politician in a democracy is to try to bring people together and reduce conflicts, not to divide people at every opportunity by strong or divisive language. As I am such a disappointment to you I suggest you post your comments elsewhere.”

      Gentlemen, please. While this is JR’s site, JR’s rules, I honestly don’t see any reason for angst amongst ourselves. Just because the country is divided doesn’t mean we have to be.

      If I may say I think you’re both right to a degree. Sometimes our words catch us off guard.

      Kind regards to you both.

  8. Sea Warrior
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:05 am | Permalink

    Presumably, in post-Brexit times, the EU will have to pay to access our fishing grounds. Or would the Europhile Commons insist that the EU continues to enjoy that economic benefit?
    Some years ago, I commanded one of Her Majesty’s offshore patrol vessels. We came across one of these monster ships, in the South West Approaches, and sent across an inspection team. Later, as I was reviewing the Boarding Officer’s report, I was struck by how one ship had a tonnage of Horse Mackerel that exceeded a Type 42 destroyer’s displacement

    • Mark B
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:52 am | Permalink

      Fantastic post, Sea Warrior. It is good to hear from people at the sharp end of things such as this and to get their perspective.

      The problem with these large vessels is in fact their size and ability to hoover up one species or another. Fewer ship operators means less competition and so higher prices. Another reason to ban these from our waters.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:45 am | Permalink

      It should not be paying to access grounds. Any fishing should be based in the UK subject to whatever inward investment (and immigration) rules the UK chooses to have. Any product would then be exported.

    • steve
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      Sea Warrior

      “Presumably, in post-Brexit times, the EU will have to pay to access our fishing grounds”

      Any EU access to our fishing grounds is absolutely not acceptable, whether they pay for it or not.

      Any government that fails to prevent EU fishing in our waters will find themselves out of a job very quickly.

      Leave voters have no tolerance on this red line issue.

      • Andy
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

        I suspect they will. When the EU reciprocates and blocks access to EU waters to British fisherman – and the UK industry is decimated as a result.

        • Edward2
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

          We don’t want to fish in their fishing grounds.
          We just want our own fishing grounds back.
          As usual you build your argument on false claims.

          • steve
            Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

            Edward 2

            It’s a waste of effort with him, he doesn’t consider facts. And anyone who doesn’t see things his queer way is a bigoted pensioner or a little Englander.

  9. Mick
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    Couldn’t agree more Sir John, and then you have the snp constantly whining on about staying in the dreaded Eu so they could give the Scottish fishing rights back to Brussels to fish in there waters, unbelievable they really are a party of chancers let’s hope the good people of Scotland see through there smoke screen and get shut at the next General Election along with all the other Eu loving muppets in Parliament

    • steve
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 2:47 pm | Permalink


      “…let’s hope the good people of Scotland…”

      Remember that the ‘good’ people of Scotland, as you describe them, elected the SNP in the first place.

      I therefore take that as representative of what Scots think of us. Accordingly I believe we should repatriate the HMRC centres and any other utilities, HM Dockyards etc, and give them the option to pay for prescriptions or go without just like we have to.

      The Barnett formula should be scrapped also.

      Then, a future indy ref should also include an English plebiscite. I think the haters north of Hadrian’s wall would be in for a well deserved shock.

      They get too much free at English expense and in return knife us in the back at every opportunity. Time the act of union was ripped up, in my opinion.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:54 pm | Permalink

        Exactly Steve. ‘The good people of Scotland’ want their cake and eat it too. They need us for the hands outs but moan and groan about Westminster and the English at every turn.

  10. kees
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    Hardly ‘thoughtless’ for a EU factory ships to be fishing in EU waters- for that is what is allowed by quota agreement at the moment and it remains to be seen what part of these fishing waters will be eventually negotiated back by the UK in the final carve up- also don’t forget the the UK has had a place at the top table for forty years to argue these things and if successive British governments failed to make a case then can hardly blame the Dutch- but again and as you full well know there can be no future trade relationship until the past is cleared up- and satisfactorily cleared up- whether before or after 31st Oct.

    Reply They will trade with us without a Withdrawal Agreement!

    • Edward2
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:57 am | Permalink

      You ruin your own argument.
      “the UK has had a place at the top table for fourty years to argue these things”
      And it got us absolutely nowhere.
      One vote in 28.
      Only 9 pay in .
      The rest take money out.

    • Oggy
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:32 am | Permalink

      It is no wonder with EU ‘friends’ like you that we voted to leave your evil empire. If I had my way the EU wouldn’t get any future fishing rights at all in UK waters.

      Don’t make me laugh about a place at the top table – on every single occasion we voted against anything we didn’t agree with we were overruled. That’s EU democracy.

      Speaking of the past it’s just been the 75th anniversary of Arnhem, Brave British blood spilt to try to free Holland from other tyranny. I will say no more.

    • Garland
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      You are of course right kees, but sadly reality has no place in the heads of the Brexiteers. An important further point is that a large majority of the fish caught in UK waters right now are sold to the EU 27 – partly because they eat fish that Brits won’t (pollock, hake) but mainly simply because the EU27 is a much bigger market than the UK. If the UK walks away with no deal and bars EU27 boats from its waters, then I can assure you that the EU will immediately introduce tariffs on UK fish and also will apply strict health checks at the border. That is in fact required under WTO law, because the UK will be a third country (by its own choice). Within a few days of leaving with no deal there will be some very angry UK fishermen who have lost their largest market asking some questions of people like Farage, Gove and Redwood who said this would be all gain, no pain

      • Edward2
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

        The UK will add tariffs and health checks on EU imports.
        Two can play your game Garland.
        There will be angry European fishermen who face bankruptcy.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

          Oh, and isn’t that so much better than people being contented, mutually amiable, and prosperous, as they were pre 2016?

          Do you Leave fanatics have any capability for self-examination whatsoever?

          • Edward2
            Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

            Its business
            It is about negotiations.
            People will come to an amicable solution.
            If we offer free trade do you reckon the EU will refuse?

          • steve
            Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:23 pm | Permalink


            “Do you Leave fanatics have any capability for self-examination whatsoever?”

            Well you evidently do, judging by where you appear to be speaking from.

          • NickC
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

            Martin, And why can’t we be contented, mutually amiable, and prosperous, after Brexit? Ohhh . . . it couldn’t be because Remain fanatics like you will continue to foment trouble, could it?

        • RichardM
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

          Edward2 So it’s a Lose lose. That’s Brexit in a nutshell

          • Edward2
            Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

            No RichardM it is just straightforward negotiations between two nations.
            If the UK then offers tariff free trade what do you think the EU will say?

          • NickC
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

            RichardM, Why should Brexit be lose-lose when the majority of nations on the planet are perfectly capable of living without the EU’s “guidance”? Is the UK uniquely unfitted to be independent, in your opinion?

    • Piet
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:02 am | Permalink they won’t not until the 39billion is paid up front..or is it 50 billion now? Unfortunately for you nobody trusts your UK Tory government or the multi faced PM B Johnson

      • steve
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:28 pm | Permalink


        If there was a general election tomorrow, the conservatives would win. Ask Jeremy Corbyn.

    • NickC
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:53 am | Permalink

      Kees, I wouldn’t call the EU the “top table”, more the “delusional arrogant table”. Anyway they never took any notice of us, so it’s no loss. And at least we’ll get our fish back, provided Remains don’t give away that UK resource again.

    • libertarian
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:45 am | Permalink


      The point that you ultra remainers always miss is that the EU does NOT protect animals/fish adequately

      they allow

      Factory trawling of fish stocks and insist on throwing away large numbers of fish

      The allow the live transport of animals for slaughter

      They allow the force feeding of geese and ducks until their livers explode

      They support cow stabbing as a sport

      The support pony wresting as a sport

      I’m glad you are happy with all of this kees

    • Whirl pool
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      Not trading with us properly will have consequences in each of the EU nation states. Predictions of those outcomes in their parliaments not possible…some could be good in statistic economic terms, some bad, but all in themselves change which bundled with all the changes of each and every EU-state will make a different and even more unstable EU. Reverses and extreme shifts. A weird ever changing jigsaw, dangerous.

    • Martinez
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply. D’ya think?

      • Edward2
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

        Well yes I do.
        Are you really claiming that all the European companies will refuse to sell their goods and services to us after the UK has left the EU?
        I find that very unlikely.

        • Martinez
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

          Who said- do you seriously think the German car workers are going to stand by and not kick up a fuss with Mrs Merkel and to bring her onside- answer IDS august 2016

          Who said- it would be easiest deal ever? Mr Fox

          Who said- that the EU always settles at the last moment- Answer: that great negotiator DD- well we’ll know very soon

          Edward2- the EU is a rules based club but like in Britain its politics trumps economy- every time

          • Edward2
            Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

            Well if these European companies want to refuse to take our orders worth billions per year then fine.
            We can then buy home made, or from other nations like Japan, USA, South Korea and dozens of other keen and willing suppliers.

        • tim
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

          Edward2- please refuse to sell goods to UK, we can buy much cheaper from the WORLD outside EU.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 10:48 am | Permalink

            Yes, buy your medicines from the Third World then. I’m sure that they are indeed cheaper.

          • Edward2
            Posted October 8, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

            As you say Martin, there are many alternative nations for the supply of medicines currently sourced from Europe.

          • libertarian
            Posted October 9, 2019 at 7:13 pm | Permalink


            Currently 80% of our medicines are sourced from outside the EU

  11. Mike Stallard
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    I have just been reading how the very anti EU Italian Five Star Movement has broken its alliance with the League and has allied with the very pro EU Democratic Party instead. The EU wrecks democracy. It decides what happens – on its own terms and to hell with anyone else.
    Here is another case of just that. We are, frankly powerless at the moment to do anything about over fishing are we not.
    We must leave on 31st October. We just must and to hell with the consequences!

    • Mark B
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

      I saw a lecture on defence and security on YT which highlighted just how dangerous our membership is to us and membership and access to Five Eyes. This too is an area of absolute importance.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:30 am | Permalink

      I ask again, why wait until October 31st?

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      Works for me. The consequence is freedom.

    • Martinez
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

      Consequences will be the start of the UK breakup with England finally on it’s way to becoming a true republic free of all encumbents- that’s how serious it all is now

      • steve
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 2:51 pm | Permalink


        I think you may be right.

  12. Alan Jutson
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    What do you expect from Mrs May’s and the Remainers “friends” in Europe.

    They have a right to fish there right up until the day we leave, and perhaps afterwards as well if we do not set/change the rules. !

    Just like wanting our money, and our home market to sell to, they want our fish as well, and they will make it as difficult as possible for us to gain control back.

    That is why we have to simply walk away and trade under WTO rules instead of pussy footing around and pleading for more and more years of talks.

    The Referendum was all about US TAKING BACK CONTROL.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:35 am | Permalink

      Couldn’t agree more, Alan.
      We have been pussy-footing around for far too long.
      Time to walk away and trade on WTO terms.
      Time to go forward into a Brave New World of our own making – and what we make of it is then up to us.
      Time to take responsibility and become an independent country again.

      • henfer
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

        “Brave New World of our making”, like Huxley’s one?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      Yes, the referendum was exactly about the US taking back control.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

        Ah, the anti-Americanism card is played …

      • NickC
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

        Martin, It is you that wants our country ruled by foreigners. Not me, I want independence. Given that you’ll get your way despite our vote, it will make sense to see which foreign ruler is best – China? – India? – USA? – Russia? – EU? Clearly the best of your loser’s option is the USA.

    • Andy
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      Going well then, is it?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      But instead the Speaker, unelected Justices and some traitor MPs took control – only to restore control to EU unelected bureaucrats.

    • NickC
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Alan Jutson, Absolutely right – Leave is about taking back control from the EU. And re-gaining control of the UK’s EEZ is the bellwether issue.

    • Grimsby Man
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:26 am | Permalink

      You totally misunderstand the UK fishing industry, Mr Jutson. Our fishing boats sell most of their catch to other EU countries. In the event of no deal, that market will be closed off because of high tariffs and the obligation to show that our exports meet the EU standards. So we will have our protected waters to fish in – and rotting fish will be piled up on our docks because Brexit has robbed us of the frictionless trade that comes with EU membership. Same story for Welsh lamb, by the way. People who actualky work in these industries are tearing their hair out at you Brexiters loftily telling us it will work out fine when you clearly have no clue how trade in our industries actually works

      • Edward2
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

        Offer all your cheap fish to UK consumers.
        Maybe we will look again and buy it.
        And you forget tariff free trade can be negotiated.
        If the UK offers the EU tariff free trade on fish imports do you think they will refuse, especially if we warn we will put tariffs on EU fish imports.
        Please define frictionless trade

        • Here and Now
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 5:24 am | Permalink

          If the UK offers the EU tariff free trade on fish imports, the EU will reply “no, we cannot do that under WTO law unless we make the same concession to every other country in the world, which we will not do because it will destroy our fishing industry”. I LOVE the way you Brexiters say we should trade under WTO rules, yet the first suggestion you make violates WTO rules

          • Edward2
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 7:18 am | Permalink

            You can have different tariffs.
            Do some research before you post.

          • NickC
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

            Here and now, I am constantly amazed by how much Remains fail to understand the most basic concepts. The WTO encourages free trade deals, didn’t you know? And, under WTO rules, the UK is allowed to set its own tariffs. Doh!

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

        “Same story for Welsh lamb, by the way.”

        UK households only have to buy a little more UK lamb, to the value of about 21p per week, to solve that problem; and they could easily get that 21p per week by taking all southern Irish products including beef off their shopping lists.

        “As for our exports of lamb to the rest of the EU, which is now being presented as a huge obstacle to a no deal Brexit, they amount to less than 0.o2% of GDP.

        “The value of UK sheep meat exports in 2015 was £302 million.”

        “… over 95 per cent of UK sheep meat exports went to other EU countries.”

        UK GDP in 2015 = £1.89 trillion = £1,890 billion = £1,890,000 million.

        £302 million divided by £1,890,000 million = 0.00016 = 0.016% of UK GDP.

        So the lamb’s tail which is now being waved around in an effort to stop us leaving the EU without a withdrawal agreement is even smaller than the 0.1% of UK GDP which crosses the Irish land border and which Theresa May allowed to be used as a tail to wag the whole UK dog … “

      • James Bertram
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

        Grimsby Man – I’m not sure where you get your figures from?
        Have I misunderstood your argument? Please explain.

        Using – particularly page 38, we have:
        – 60% of fish caught by the UK fleet were landed in the UK (74% in terms of value); and this was 434,000 tonnes.
        – 40% of all landings by the UK fleet were made abroad; this was 290,000 tonnes; 126K going to Norway; 63K to Holland, 52K to Ireland, 49K other.
        – The UK fleet accounted for 90% of all fish landed into the UK.; thus foreign vessel landings into the UK were 10% = 48K tonnes

      • James Bertram
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        Around 40% of Welsh lamb is exported with 92% of those exports going to EU countries, according to Chris Horseman, who is a policy adviser for market analyst Agribusiness Intelligence.

        G.Monbiot argues (Ch 9. ‘Feral’) that sheep-farming in Wales is highly destructive of the environment and that the Welsh Uplands should be rewilded. Too, these sheep farmers are highly reliant on subsidy. He quotes 2009/10 figures: ‘In Wales, the average subsidy for sheep farms on the hills is £53,000. Average net farm income is £33,000. The contribution the famer makes to his income by raising sheep and cattle, in other words, is minus £20,000.’

        Grimsby man – comparing the prospects of UK fishing industry with that of Welsh lamb is, it seems, chalk and cheese when it comes to net contribution to the UK’s GDP – and as opposites when comparing benefits to our UK environment, our seas and land.

        • Here and Now
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 5:25 am | Permalink

          That’s fine – just as long as you will be the one knocking on the door of teh farmhouse to tell the farmers they are going to be out of a job after Brexit.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 10:02 am | Permalink

            If you were really worried about the plight of Welsh sheep farmers then you could do your bit to help them by buying more Welsh lamb and less Irish beef.

      • Mark B
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 3:22 am | Permalink

        So why would fish, for which there would be no market, be caught and then left to rot ? You assume that this will be a one sided affair but, do they not sell beef, dairy products, flowers and manufactured goods to us ? Or things continue as before ?

        I know the EU does not care about its citizens, witness Greece, and maybe they will shut us out, but what then ? I guess we will have to find new markets.

  13. Fed Up Englishman
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    If the EU keeps us trapped in its clutches, I would like to see our fishermen simply taking a leaf out of the book of French farmers etc. by taking back control themselves. Unilaterally increase their allowable catches. Protest by dumping rotten fish outside the Houses of Parliament and sabotaging the efforts of inspectors trying to enforce EU rules.

  14. Tabulazero
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    Save the aerospace and automotive industries !

  15. Kevin
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    The lead-up to the Scottish referendum was accompanied by a “trailer”
    on TV in which David Cameron’s speeches were edited and spliced together to
    make him “sing” a pop song: “We are never getting back together”. Leave
    meant leave back in those days.

  16. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    This is obviously being done to wind us up. Friends? Who needs them when they behave like this. The sooner we are out the better John. Just tell Boris to tell them to stick it! Sorry, but most of the British public have had enough and friends of mine that voted remain are now wanting to leave. They can see exactly what we are dealing with and it stinks like a load of dead fish.

  17. BOF
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    If, as seems to be the intention, the W/A passes with tweaks to the backstop, this ship and others will be decimationg our fish stocks for years to come.

  18. None of the Above
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Dear Sir John,
    I agree and thank you for your thought provoking posts.
    Off topic but I am increasingly concerned that, if attitudes in HM Opposition do not change, the Fixed Term Parliament may be used to deny the Electorate an Election until 2022.
    In view of the fact that the balance within Parliament has been changed by MPs (not the Electorate), could the Courts be asked to intervene on behalf of the People?

    • None of the Above
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:10 am | Permalink

      Sorry, The Fixed Term Parliament Act 2011.

    • treacle
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

      It is a sign of Cameron’s signal incompetence that he gave away the government’s power to decide when to hold an election to the opposition. I too am worried that the current paralysis will continue until 2022.

      • steve
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:55 pm | Permalink


        No it won’t go on that long.

        Much more of this and it will hit the streets, a general election will have be forced either by the people or the Head of State.

        There is serious anger brewing and the country is divided, something has to give.

  19. agricola
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    It is not complicated. Ensure we leave the EU on 31st October and irrespective of having or not having a deal from that day on we are once more a sovereign nation in control of our territorial waters. To do so we need to use Drones, Aircraft and Ships for interceptions and arrests if called for.

    We should already have a comprehensive plan in place for the conservation of our fishing grounds. Carry it out. If for practical reasons, like reciprocal fishing rights, we need to licence EU boats to fish in our waters, then put an agreed scheme in place that covers who can fish in our waters and the methods they employ to do so. I hope your government is prepared on 1st November to do so.

  20. RichardM
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    The most important parts of the UK fishing industry operate either quota free or fisheries already allocated to the UK, exporting stuff to Europe the UK doesnt buy.

    Post Brexit the additional red tape and beurocracy will cost this industry dearly. Salmon exporters apparently face an extra 15m per year in extra paperwork.

    The much bigger Welsh sheep industry will be hit even harder by your WTO Brexit as will have to trade on WTO terms and be subject to tariffs that will wipe out the export trade.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

      See above:

      “As for our exports of lamb to the rest of the EU, which is now being presented as a huge obstacle to a no deal Brexit, they amount to less than 0.o2% of GDP.”

      • hefner
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

        And how many Welsh farmers these 0.02% of GDP represent seen from Maidenhead?

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 6:56 am | Permalink

          Maidenhead is not in Wales. There are sheep farmers around here who are not Welsh sheep farmers and any lamb they export to the rest of the UK is included in that 0.02% of UK GDP. Once again a Remoaner shows a complete lack of perspective.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted October 7, 2019 at 7:03 am | Permalink

            export to the rest of the EU

      • RichardM
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

        Denis Cooper it’s just one of many industries that will struggle to survive. Name one that for which no deal is a positive.

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 7:01 am | Permalink

          It will not struggle to survive if it can adapt when we leave the EU as it adapted when we joined the EEC, and instead of just moaning about the change you could help them by buying their lamb rather than Irish beef.

        • dixie
          Posted October 7, 2019 at 9:28 am | Permalink

          Scottish Whisky

        • libertarian
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

          Richard M

          Fin Tech

          Any digital based business


          Vacuum cleaner manufacturers

          Light bulb manufacturers


          5.4 million small businesses who will no longer have to implement costly EU regulations when they dont export anywhere

          and dozens more cant be bothered to list them all

  21. Everhopeful
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    Naturally UK fishing has seldom been helped by international treaties.
    The “ Cod Wars” ended with huge fishing losses. All our rights ceded by those who either did not want to negotiate in their country’s favour or were just no good at negotiating.
    In our case that which we have must be stripped from us.
    Certain celeb chefs visit European fish markets. “ Why can’t we have this variety…this choice?” they wail, clutching a dead flounder.
    Well…we DID but our leaders took it away and gave it to someone else!

  22. A.Sedgwick
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    The hypocrisy of “the end of the world is nigh” mob will be fully in evidence this week but the real today issues such as protecting fish and the sea beds is too mundane, immediate and in conflict with the EU, which the Greens regard as saviours.

  23. Caterpillar
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    I apologise for repetition from a few days ago. Three quick checks on any future WA:

    1. No unrepresented law/rule taking period.
    2. Clear (short) time limits on any ECJ involvement.
    3. Immediate control of waters.

    there are plenty of others but these will be easy to spot without the need to be a lawyer.

  24. Julie Williams
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    Will we get our waters back or will a “deal” scupper this? The EU will do everything in it’s power to keep these rights.
    If not?
    I suspect lorries exporting fish an seafood to France will be “inconvenienced” as they have been whilst we were members of the EU!

  25. L Jones
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    The word ”thoughtless” is a tad kind, isn’t it?
    This sort of spiteful action surely must show to remainers that these governments (though let’s exclude the people generally) are NOT our ”friends”.

  26. Denis Cooper
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    Stephen Barclay’s piffle in the Sunday Telegraph:

    “This Government won’t back down on Brexit”

    “We are approaching the moment of truth. The UK and the EU need to negotiate a new approach to the Irish border issue. Or we must leave without a deal. It is doable – but only if the EU works with us. Brussels must now decide whether it wants to break the deadlock and see us leave on good terms with a deal, or no deal.

    On Wednesday, the Prime Minister set out our proposals for a new Protocol on the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland to replace the anti-democratic backstop. A backstop which was, let’s remember, rejected by the UK Parliament three times. The proposals represent a very reasonable compromise which honours the referendum result and delivers Brexit. As the backstop would have … ”

    We have had this business about needing a new approach to the (largely invented) Irish border issue before, for example here in March 2019:

    and before that in January 2019:

    and as stated in that earlier post:

    “It’s deja vu all over again, as they say, because on May 10th 2018 the FT ran this:

    “Land of fairytale castles offers Brexit inspiration”

    with the sub-heading:

    “UK looks to Liechtenstein in search of creative solutions to EU trade conundrum””

    And the most recent proposals do not represent “a very reasonable compromise”; offering to institute UK legal controls on goods being exported across a maritime border between Great Britain and Northern Ireland rather than where they are actually needed, at the land border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic, is just plain daft.

    As pointed out in a letter published in the Irish Times on September 21 2018:

    “Brexit – time to mind our own business?”

    “The legitimate interests of the EU and its Irish satrapy do not extend beyond the nature of the goods circulating in its own EU Single Market, and it is gross impudence on the part of the EU to presume that it should be able to continue to control goods permitted in the United Kingdom once we have freed ourselves from the EU, any more than the EU can expect to control goods permitted in the United States or other “third countries”.”

  27. acorn
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    There is a lot of BS about the CFP. Once the CFP allocates fishing quotas from the “EU Pond”; based on historic catch records, the rest is down to the member states to allocate that quota to its fishing fleet. By 1983 start of the CFP, the UK fishing industry was well on its way to being privatised via the introduction of “Producer Organisation” that could permanently extract quota from the pool.

    “But in truth, the decline of the British fishing industry began some years before the EU’s common fisheries policy (CFP) took effect. And the quota hoppers are better understood as a symptom of a larger problem: decades of mismanagement by UK governments, which have seen fishing rights first commodified and then consolidated in the hands of a small and wealthy elite.”

    “The way this system was run in the 1980s and 90s saw “the pool” stripped of all but a tiny fraction of its quota, while the fishing rights managed in “the sector” were transformed into a tradable commodity.”

    “But it was Iain MacSween of the Scottish Fishermen’s Organisation – now one of the biggest producer organisations in Europe – who put the warning most vividly. In Iceland, he told MPs, privatised fishing rights had left “those who own the property rights… sitting in Florida and leasing them out to other people to go and catch.” Going further down this road in the UK would lead to smaller coastal communities having their fishing rights purchased away by wealthier ports.” (All quotes from “Privatising the seas: how the UK turned fishing rights into a commodity.”)

  28. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    This is an interesting take on the EU’s environmental credentials so vaunted by its supporters. It seems as ever that the EU is happy to target the consumer and small business with restrictive and costly environmental regulations but big business gets free reign as ever.

    To quote a little girl at the UN to whom the left and elite seem to be in thrall “How dare you!”

  29. Andy
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Most of the fish we eat we import.

    Most of the fish we catch we export.

    If fish is not up for discussion then British fishermen get badly hurt.

    The British fish industry gets badly hurt.

    British consumers get badly hurt.

    Why do you want to hurt people?

    Incidentally, fish don’t respect international waters – they swim where the like.

    • Edward2
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

      Sounds like a very balanced trade then Andy.
      One where European and UK businesses will want that very profitable and happy trade to continue.

      Only reason for a new paragraph is when there is a different topic or a different point to be made

      • Andy
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

        I do it to help you elderly folk read more easily. It’s considerate.

        And you are not interested in balanced trade. You are interested in getting your own way.

        • Edward2
          Posted October 6, 2019 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

          Sarcasm isn’t a good response Andy.
          I note you avoid addressing the actual argument, preferring to fall back on the usual remainers position of resorting to insults.

    • agricola
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      Some fish migrate to predictable patterns. Salmon and eels are good examples. Tuna move around the oceans to predictable patterns, that’s how they get themselves caught. Many of the others are territorial, they like reefs and wrecks. They tend to be found where they in turn can find food which makes them to a degree predictable. They do not swim casually where they like. Talk to fishermen who can define it better than I can.

    • Trader
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      Andy, they won’t swim where they likee once they need a passport. Didnt you know John Redwood insists we are taking back control of our borders?

  30. Pete S
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    When Heath surrendered our waters to the EEC. The settlement shows how the EEC/
    EU will take full advantage of any situation. They do not know/want to be reasonable. They should be treated in the same manner.

  31. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Once we have left the EU, the only EU ships that we should allow to fish in our waters are small boats, mainly Spanish and French. This should a transitional concession only, say for 5 years, aimed at tempering the wind to the shorn lamb out of the kindness of our hearts. After that, catches should be 100% British. Do we have the patrol boats / warships to enforce it?

  32. Gareth Warren
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    It does seem to me very well thought out to deploy such a ship in UK fishing grounds, all I ask is our government show an equal thoughtful resolve in protecting them.

    We need more fishery protection vessels of a minesweeper size, and it is even clear to me we need to rest substantial parts of our fishing grounds for at least a decade.

    This is a very good policy fit with our smaller fishing fleet, it can naturally be relaxed as the fleet expands. In time British waters can become a multi billion pound resource that brings prosperity to all.

  33. Richard1
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    The fishing industry accounts for less than 0.05% of GDP. Perhaps an artificially low figure due to the damage over the years of the CFP. Sure the CFP is bad news, but let’s focus on the things that matter. Time is short.

  34. Denis Cooper
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    Here we go, Boris Johnson was goaded into assuring MPs that his proposals would not need any new customs infrastructure anywhere in the world:

    And now Labour MP Lisa Nandy has taken him up on that:

    “The Prime Minister has told us … there’ll be no new infrastructure, but he’s proposing a border away from the border which will rely on infrastructure … he hasn’t been able to explain at all how it won’t … “

  35. Alec
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    Isn’t it clear that UK government slavishly obeys every rule not only despite it being against our interest but especially when it’s against our interest? Other countries would not hestitate to come up with some bureaucracy to prevent this ship destroying their fisheries but not us. The inescapable conclusion is that out government and civil service work actively against the good of Britain and have done for many decades.

  36. Chris
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    “once we have left the EU……”
    Yes, but with Boris apparently focused on having a deal based on the WA and PD with a few tweaks to the backstop, this isn’t going to happen. In no way is Boris going to honour Brexit by taking the current course of action (unless he is behind the scenes working towards us leaving with No Deal) and I am greatly disturbed that members of the ERG are now reportedly supporting Boris with his deal.

    I have had my fill of the Conservative Party and how our current Parliament operates and my vote will go to the Brexit Party. The swamp needs draining otherwise we will never effectively leave the EU nor cast off the current stranglehold of the illiberal left/Common Purpose/cultural Marxism on our country.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted October 7, 2019 at 6:20 am | Permalink

      Voting for the Brexit Party, under our anti-democratic, first-last-the-post political system, will NOT ‘drain the swamp’. It might add a few nutters to another hung parliament.

  37. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    A plan was shown of the twist and turn route the trawler had supposedly took while in the Channel. Given that we are told the Channel is an extremely busy and dangerous place how can this trawler – and endless rubber dinghies full of freeloaders – move around so freely?

  38. gregory martin
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    Whereas I have no doubt that these two(yes, there is another German registered vessel of huge size Annie Hildelina) have chosen this time to deplete our stocks of mackerel, the political significance is matched by the ecological reality that the nets capable of retaining mackerel also will retain not only all larger fish,but mammals such as dolphins and porpoise, both present in this area of the Channel. These vessels have no by-catch, ‘waste’ is pulverised to produce fish meal and ‘oils’. Their presence in an area designated as a ‘no catch’ area for Bass for smaller boats, and being on the edge of a Marine conservation zone created to protect spawning black bream is more than regrettable. Yet all this is deemed lawful. A new policy of discriminate fishing must be introduced and enforced. The fact that these vessels are visible from our coast is not the only reason that they must be removed.

  39. BillM
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    And that demonstrates the low esteem in which this Country is now held by some members of the EU. We are deemed, gutless weaklings.
    A succession of our PMs have allowed OUR Country to become the ‘soft touch’ for Europe.
    If those die-hard remainers cannot see this for themselves they are either blind or ignorant of patriotism or they are in the pay of Brussels. What other reasons can there be for their continuing sycophantic behaviour?

    • steve
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

      Bill M

      Yep, sadly I have to agree. You’re 100% correct.

  40. David J
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    Expanding our fishing fleet and allowing the fishing areas to continue to improve. This is one of the natural benefits of being an island nation. It will be great export gain for us. Our fleet can also take advantage of the none territorial waters, and not follow the stupid practices of dumping dead fish back into the sea. Which Federal muppet dreamt up that idea?

    • steve
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

      David J

      We don’t have to expand our fishing fleet, just kick foreign fleets out and preserve our resources.

      Even if nobody utilises them, our island’s resources should not be given to the EU.

      I wouldn’t give the ungrateful EU countries a single sprat out of the sea, or a mere grain of wheat off the land, and I wouldn’t care how desperate they are.

  41. JoolsB
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Once we leave, Scotland and the Scottish Parliament will get to decide it’s own fishing policies to suit them and them alone. Meanwhile t the UK Parliament, i.e. MPs from across the whole UK including Scotland will get to decide England’s fishing policies. How’s that going to work then John?

    • steve
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 3:02 pm | Permalink


      If it panned out as you suggest then I would be highly amused at the irony of Scotland having to whinge to the EU about their waters being plundered.

      On the point of Scottish Parliament; I’m not convinced they have one. To have a Parliament, you need a Government, and to my recollection Scotland doesn’t have a Government of it’s own, it has an ‘Assembly’. It’s only the English hating BBC who refer to Hollyrood as the Scottish Government.

      BBC propagandist word play – if it’s repeated often enough, etc, etc.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:43 pm | Permalink


        You are quite right in what you say. Scotland does not have a government. Only a devolved parliament and a first minister.

      • Mark B
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 3:41 am | Permalink

        Government or assembly, they still get to decide their affairs for themselves whereas we, the English . . . ?

  42. Rule Britannia
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    No sign as yet that Boris’s version of May’s agreement will say anything different about fish.

    Disgraceful of the Dutch to do this at this time. Of course, this doesn’t get reported in the media.

    Let’s hope the EU don’t agree to any WA and we get out on WTO terms.

  43. Dave Andrews
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    I saw the other day a programme showing how the kelp forests off the South coast have been largely destroyed, apparently by over-fishing and of the wrong type of fishing.
    We really need to regain control of our coastal waters, as clearly Brussels isn’t doing a good job of protecting the marine environment.
    That’s true of us with Brexit, but it would be also good for the remaining countries of the EU to regain control of their coasts as well and leave Brussels out of it.

  44. rose
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Here is work for Extinction Rebellion but they wouldn’t dream of going against the EU.

    Funny how the same people say we will be impoverished if we leave, and then try to wreck our economy.

  45. Denis Cooper
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    There are a couple of interesting articles here:

    “How to ensure the island of Ireland is no ‘smugglers’ paradise’ post-Brexit”

    “How to protect both the UK border and EU Single Market in a post-Brexit world”

    But neither article makes it clear that when current UK laws to implement the EU Single Market and Customs Union laws are repealed it will become necessary to pass new UK legislation so that our definition of smuggling will include the carriage across the Irish land border into the territory of the EU of any goods which do not meet EU standards.

  46. Roy Grainger
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    Irrespective of what form of Brexit is finally delivered you can be sure that the EU will try to sequence the”future partnership” or FTA negotiations so that fishing rights are agreed first before anything else is discussed. Depends who is PM as to whether we agree to this.

  47. Edwardm
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

    Tell the EU there is now no money, and if they continue to destroy fish stocks then no agreement now or later, we’ll manage fine with the rest of the world.
    Surely the EU fishing boats must be exhausting their allocation and we should then arrest and confiscate them.

  48. Dominic
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

    Our country’s become a plaything of various foreign powers whose intentions are absolutely dishonourable. Indeed those foreign powers are being aided and abetted by politicians, civil servants and certain pro-Eu elements within the media and the British state.

    The result of the 2016 EU referendum has triggered the emergence of these pathetic creatures from the shadows and their dastardly plan to destroy the UK as we know has been exposed to the full glare of public viewing

    Voting Tory, Marxist Labour and the grotesquely named Liberal Democrats will guarantee the demise of the UK

    • Kris
      Posted October 6, 2019 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

      Yes Dominic it is written in the stars- nothing lasts forever- not even the uk

  49. RichardM
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

    Brexit is all about building barriers. Leaving the single market means the UK fishing industry will face greater barriers to entering the EU market than any other European country.

    Mind numbing red tape. Catch certificates. Pre notification. Customs declarations. Tariff charge. Export health certificates. Vet required to seal consignments and issue health certificates. Safety and security declaration. All this required for every single consignment.

    ALL EXTRA RED TAPE thanks to your WTO brexit.

    • dixie
      Posted October 8, 2019 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

      Doesn’t this bureaucracy already apply today to EU fleets? What of the EU fleets that fish outside EU waters, such as the African coast? If not how does the EU police and enforce it’s policies and rules.

      If does apply then surely our fishermen already implement such procedures and paperwork … so what extra is there?

  50. margaret howard
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    A friend of mine has just returned from a month’s holiday travelling around the Greek islands.

    So embarrassed was she about people asking her wherever she went what had possessed the English for voting Brexit and the shenanigans that have engulfed the country ever since, that she is planning to have a t-shirt printed with the slogan

    “Sorry, not my fault – I voted Remain”

    before she ventures to Europe again!

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted October 7, 2019 at 6:50 am | Permalink

      “So embarrassed………..”

      Were these expats that your friend was talking to Margaret, perhaps worried about their future standing with the EU, but then they had already chose to leave the UK.

      From my experience abroad, many would like to join us in leaving the EU.

      • margaret howard
        Posted October 7, 2019 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

        No Alan, they, like most of our friends avoid mingling with expats.

        • dixie
          Posted October 8, 2019 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

          You avoid mingling with UK people who live in other EU countries? Why ever would you not embrace those who fully accept and adopt EU supra-governmental rule?

    • libertarian
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 7:27 pm | Permalink


      So your Greek friends think the English are mad . UK youth unemployment 10.8% Greek youth unemployment 40.4%

      Tell your friend she would be better off having a T shirt that says my kids got a job has yours?

  51. mancunius
    Posted October 6, 2019 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

    Really, countries have gone to war with less provocation than this.
    We need an active, well-financed fleet and personnel to patrol our waters. We cannot expect EU countries to observe international law. We shall have to observe it for them.

    All military co-operation with the EU should cease for the time being.

  52. SNP gone dutch
    Posted October 7, 2019 at 5:00 am | Permalink

    In what could be a further blow to the EU, American oil companies, sources report, continue withdrawing investment in Norway’s gas and oil and are thinking of selling off assets in the North Sea and concentrating on US onshore shale development.
    The SNP are at odds with the US LNG imports and indeed what it terms Westminster over Scotland’s undeveloped shale gas assets. Given the UK tax-payer has been shoring up really diminishing returns from what the SNP call Scotland’s oil due to world decline in oil and gas prices, and with its tossing out of the boat Scotland’s fish as somehow admirable, things are looking bleak under SNP rule over Scottish people. It fails to invest, endeavours to deplete Scotland’s ability to fish and is obsessed with just who owns a relatively tiny golf course in its song of anti-Americanism. With increased EU tax on her whisky and the American market, the SNP is nose-diving Scotland into bankruptcy

    • margaret howard
      Posted October 7, 2019 at 3:19 pm | Permalink


      “In what could be a further blow to the EU, American oil companies, sources report, continue withdrawing investment in Norway’s gas and oil…”

      Norway are not EU members.

      • Edward2
        Posted October 8, 2019 at 6:51 am | Permalink

        Strictly speaking that is correct but Norway is about as close as you can possibly be without being a legally defined member.

  53. Fred H
    Posted October 8, 2019 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    We should warn the Dutch that to arrive in our waters with their huge factory ship the Margiris would mean after LEAVING the EU we would ban ANY fishing vessel from ever working in our waters.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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