HC Deb 02 April 1962 vol 657 c8
11. Mr. Hayman

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will make a statement on the infringement of fishing rights involved in the recent incident when a fishing boat near Lundy Island was fired at from the island.

Mr. Vane

Yes, Sir. The person claiming to be the owner of Lundy Island also claims an exclusive right of fishing within three miles of the coast. I have no evidence of the validity of this claim. This is a matter for the courts. I am unable therefore to acknowledge that there has been any infringement of fishing rights.

Mr. Hayman

That seems a very unsatisfactory Answer. The newspaper reports alleged that the owner admits that he fired at least one of the shots, that a shot was embedded in the mast of one boat, and one of the Crown authorities had said that fishing rights belong to ordinary fishermen below medium high tide, whatever that may be. Surely the Minister has done something more than to quote to a Member of Parliament what has happened and the state of the law? Has he taken no action in regard to this illegal act of firing on what the owner might call a trespasser?

Mr. Vane

It is unsatisfactory, I agree, but it is a curious case, and the irregular use of firearms, as the hon. Member knows, is a matter for the police.