Fishermen in Wales to have storm-damaged gear replaced

image captionMassive tidal surges and storm-force winds have smashed gear and left fishermen struggling to get their boats out to sea

Fishermen left counting the cost after recent storms damaged or destroyed gear, will have equipment repaired or replaced by the Welsh government.

A fund has been set up after fishermen appealed for financial help last month.

The industry employs around 1,900 people in full and part-time jobs and is worth £20m to the Welsh economy.

The New Under Ten Fisherman's Association (NUTFA) said it was extremely pleased because the damaged caused has been "considerable".

"We have been speaking to fishermen about how the recent bad weather has affected them and so far we have found that pot fishermen have been particularly badly affected and that the major issue they face is lost or damaged equipment," said Natural Resources Minister, Alun Davies.

"This new scheme will allow fishermen to replace or repair their damaged gear and get back to work.

Repair costs

"The aim is to help fishermen and our coastal communities more widely to get back on their feet as quickly as possible."

Jeremy Percy, chief executive of NUTFA, added: "We look forward to details of this scheme and hope there will be sufficient funds to cover the cost of the repair and replacement of equipment, which will be considerable.

"It's clear that following our intervention raising the plight of fishermen, the needs of fishermen have finally been recognised by the Welsh government."

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