Wales Update: Driving to fish locally is now possible

Our continued efforts to lobby Welsh Government to allow safe, sensible driving to go fishing have been rewarded.

After an update from Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales, we can confirm that driving to fish within Wales is now possible – but it must be local and follow the guidance laid out on the Welsh Government website.

This is fantastic news for Welsh anglers, whom for many, their mental and physical wellbeing depends on being able to enjoy fishing in the outdoors, as an exercise and as a pastime.

Following our continued efforts for limited driving to fish, and for parity with anglers in England, our letter was quickly acknowledged by two Welsh Government departments.

Our letter put forward the case that driving short, local distances would be essential for anglers with mobility issues, the elderly, disabled, and for certain types of angling, that in some case require more tackle to be carried, and of course for those not lucky enough to live within walking distance of a suitable venue.

Following us taking up this issue directly, the Welsh Government has made the sensible decision to change their stance, therefore driving short, local distances to fish is now possible in Wales.

Please remember that Wales is still in lockdown during COVID-19 restrictions and social distancing regulations must be respected at all times.

It is extremely important that anglers in Wales follow the Welsh Government regulations, which can be found here.

These must be strictly adhered to at all times.

Welsh Government body National Resources Wales have also laid out clear guidelines, specifically for anglers. You can read them here.

We would ask all anglers in Wales to act responsibly – local angling means going to the nearest suitable venue, using common sense. Travel for exercise is not unlimited in Wales, unlike in England. Please do not travel from Wales to fish in England and vice versa.

In the case of freshwater angling you must check that the angling club or fishery has decided to re-open before fishing. Some may choose not to, please respect their wishes. This is particularly important in rural areas, where landowners and local residents have to be considered.

We also advise anglers to ensure their NRW rod licences are up-to-date before fishing. These can be ordered online.

We recommend anglers follow the Angling Trust guidelines, which lay out a clear, safe framework for Angling to take place, as it does in England.