RSA Strategy Group

“There is a huge potential for sea angling activity and economic value to be boosted if fish stocks are restored to healthy and productive levels.”
The findings of the group were presented to the Minister in February 2012.

His initial reply may be found here.

The mission of the RSA strategy is to ensure that, in recognition of RSA’s potential contribution to income and employment in Scotland, and to participants’ quality of life, RSA in Scotland is appropriately protected, enhanced and suitably integrated into management of the marine environment and wider economic development initiatives.”

Scotland’s coastline and seas provide a wonderful environment in which to enjoy Recreational Sea Angling (RSA) and many other recreational activities.

The Scottish sea angling community is a diverse one, involving dedicated sea anglers (some of whom fish competitively), tourists who try some fishing while on holiday and a range of people after a fish or two “for the pot”.

The Scottish Government recognises the importance of sea angling to many people’s quality of life and that it can make a significant economic contribution to numerous coastal communities.

To help them understand the scale, character and economic impact of RSA in Scotland, the Scottish Government commissioned Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) to undertake a detailed study, published in July 2009, to look at these things.

In the wake of the study, the Scottish Government set up a Recreational Sea Angling Strategy Group in order to identify the best way forward for the sport and how best to realise RSA’s economic potential.

The Strategy Group, chaired by Alan Radford (GCU), is made up of a range of relevant interests including Marine Scotland officials, Tourism and Sports officials, VisitScotland, Scottish Enterprise, COSLA, Scottish Coastal Forum, Highland and Islands Enterprise, AFYD and, of course, representatives from the Scottish sea angling world including the Scottish Federation of Sea Anglers, the Angling Development Board of Scotland and SSACN.

SSACN have submitted the following papers to the group :

  • Protect and enhance - the purpose of this paper is to try and highlight actions / discussion areas which would enable Scotland to rebuild its once world class sea angling sector; the difference between its loss and its enhancement would be in the region of 2,500+ jobs and £55+ million/yr in household income.

It’s major conclusion is that other than the fact that there is a need for a general increase in the quantity and quality of all species, determining a strategy for enhancing stocks of interest to sea anglers is not a simple ‘one size fits all’ exercise.

  • Past, present and future– a paper briefly outlining the rise and fall of Scottish sea angling and Scotland as an internationally recognised sea angling destination of choice.It suggests that all concerned with sea angling - the Scottish Government, fisheries managers, Tourism and Enterprise bodies and the sea angling sector - need to address the decades of inshore stock mismanagement and suggests a number of initiatives which could help regenerate our inshore stocks and once again make Scotland a major European sea angling destination.
  • Setting Priorities - The intention of this document is to attempt to articulate the issues which we feel need to be taken into account when determining the priorities for the strategy as there are complex relationships.