Local fishery launches new round of projects
This week the Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) phase 2 project, backed by EU funding of £800,000, was launched at the Jerwood Gallery. Hastings Borough Council’s communications staff report.
Over 40 representatives from the fishing fleet, Hastings Borough Council, the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) and local business and voluntary organisations gathered to celebrate successfully securing £800,000 from the European Maritime Fisheries Fund to help sustain and develop the ongoing future of the fleet and fishery businesses.
FLAG 2 is the second round of funding to help benefit local fisheries, coastal communities and the wider supply chain infrastructure. In round 1, Hastings FLAG used the funding to support over 20 projects, including Classroom on the Coast, improvements to the Winch Road, net-folding machines for the fishing boats, improvements to the fish market, a new fish smokery and the coastal fishing trail.
Targeting three areas
“This is excellent news for our local fishing industry,” said Cllr Peter Chowney, the council’s leader. “As lead authority, we will work with FLAG partners to target funding in three areas; a sustainable fleet and supply chain, protection of the environment and identity of the place, and we will focus on fewer, bigger projects.”
He added: “Our local fishing heritage goes way beyond the direct economics of fishing and has a huge impact on other areas, including tourism. Congratulations must go to everyone involved in securing the FLAG 2 bid and we look forward to the projects that emerge from this second round of funding”.
The launch was an opportunity to show off some of the successful projects from FLAG 1, enjoy some of the local catch expertly prepared by Paul Webbe and find out what FLAG 2 projects will do.
Strong local partnership
“The FLAG programme in Hastings is recognised as a strong local partnership which is achieving real results,” commented FLAG board chair Steve Manwaring. “We are delighted that we have received further investment and together we can support our local industry, develop a Hastings brand and contribute to the promotion of the Hastings catch positively to new markets and consumers.
“Our launch was a great success in demonstrating what has been achieved, consulting on the programme and ensuring that our partners are engaged in the new FLAG 2 initiative.”