§ 4. Mr. Boothby
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he is aware that poaching on certain rivers in Scotland has now reached such dimensions that it threatens to ruin the salmon-fishing industry and that the penalties inflicted under the poaching laws are no deterrent; and whether he proposes to bring in amending legislation.
§ The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. Westwood)
No complaints about poaching in salmon rivers have been made to my Department in recent months. Responsibility for the employment of water bailiffs for the protection of private salmon fishing rests with the owners of the fishings and with Salmon Fishery District Boards. The monetary penalties which may be imposed may be supplemented by the court by forfeiture of the catch and of the equipment used. I can hold out no prospect of early legislation.
§ Mr. Boothby
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that it is not the private owners of fishing in the rivers who are affected by this so much as the fishermen at the mouth of the river, because poaching on the scale going on is completely ruining the whole of the salmon rivers of Scotland by preventing the salmon returning there? Would he look into it in the light of information I will give him?