HC Deb 07 March 1939 vol 344 cc1914-5
65. Mr. Henderson Stewart

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether the Fishery Board have now completed their inquiries into the case of damage caused to nets and gear of three St. Monance drifters by the operations of ring-net boats; what is the result of these inquiries; and what steps it is proposed to take to prevent a repetition of incidents of this kind?

Mr. Colville

Yes, Sir. The Fishery Board for Scotland have made the further inquiries which were promised in my answer to the hon. Member on 23rd February. These have not produced any evidence that the damage was caused by the operations of ring-net fishermen. The commanders of the Fishery Cruisers have instructions to take all possible steps to prevent difficulties arising between drift and ring-net boats and every effort will be made to secure that damage to drift nets does not occur.

Mr. Stewart

Can my right hon. Friend say whether the Fishery Board have come to any conclusion? The damage must have been caused somehow. What was the reason?

Mr. Colville

The board could not be positive, but it is thought that in the three cases referred to the damage is likely to have been caused by the tail ends of the fleets of nets fouling the bottom.