The Young Fishermen’s Network

A group of young, active fisherman in Cornwall have created a supportive space to encourage the next generation of fishermen and share positive insights into their lives sustainably harvesting fish and shellfish

“We have set up the Youth Board to offer a platform for the young fishermen’s ‘voice’ because we believe they can bring a different perspective to many of the challenges the industry is facing. That different perspective and youthful enthusiasm can provide strategic guidance, positive thinking, and can help shape the industry they will hopefully be working in, into the future.”

Chris Ranford, CEO of the Cornish Fish Producers' Organisation

“I started going to sea when I was 9 , after hanging around the harbour as a kid. After my very first trip at sea I was hooked and new i was going to be a fisherman. Which I did after I left college at 17”

James Robert owner of the Bonnie Grace and skipper of the Mayflower

“I’m 16 years old and have been fishing since I was a young lad going out on a little boat with a rod then when I got to 12 I started to go on bigger boats catching crab and lobster, I’ve been on a few different sized boats, but at the moment I’m on a boat called the Pisces fishing for crab and lobster day-tripping. I have always loved fishing and I usually take time off school to go sea and hopefully one day I’ll be sat in the wheelhouse shouting orders”

Owen William, a young fisherman from Padstow

“The job isn’t for everyone but it can be very rewarding, work hard and keep learning and then anything is possible.”

Joel Dunn, first generation fisherman

'The future of fishing is dependent
on young people coming through and taking over. Without that next generation of skippers the future
won’t be great. But hearing the enthusiasm from the work we’re doing on this apprenticeship scheme,
the future looks bright.’

Paul Trebilcock, host of Fathom Podcast

‘It’s really coming from the industry. It’s
exactly what the skippers want, what the vessel owners want. We’re building people here who are going
to take the industry forward,’

Chris Ranford, CEO of the Cornish Fish Producers' Organisation

It was wonderful to hear the views of a new generation of fishermen. Leaving the EU gives us an opportunity to design a new domestic fishing policy that protects our marine
environment while allowing our fishing industry to thrive. It is by listening to the Youth Board and other
young fishermen across the UK that we will realise this ambition for a prosperous future.”

Victoria Prentis, Fisheries Minister

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