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Apply now to join the Voluntary Bailiff Service and
make a difference in the fight against fisheries crime
The Angling Trust is now recruiting
Phase 1 Volunteer Bailiffs to join the
highly successful and widely
respected Voluntary Bailiff Service
(VBS) in supporting the Environment
Agency and Police in the ongoing
fight against fisheries crime and illegal fishing.
Up to 15 successful applicants will
be trained by policing and enforcement professionals in each of the six
enforcement regions – North East,
North West, Midlands, East, South
East and South West – to keep watch
on fisheries and report incidents and
suspicious activity to a high evidential standard to both the Environment
Agency and Police.
However, no further applications
are required in the South East as the
quota has been filled from those
anglers who expressed an interest in
joining since we last closed recruitment a year ago.
The VBS is part of the Angling
Trust’s Fisheries Enforcement Support Service (FESS) which is funded
by the Environment Agency through
fishing licence income.
Dilip Sarkar MBE, the Angling
Trusts National Enforcement Manager, said: “We have places for a maximum of 15 new recruits in all of our
six enforcement regions but no longer
need fresh applications from the
South East due to the positive
response we have already received
from anglers.
“What many people may not realise
is that we are capped at 500 Phase 1
volunteers so we can only recruit to
maintain that number as and when
existing volunteers’ life priorities
change and they move on, providing
others a chance to enjoy this unique
volunteering opportunity. There is an
application and selection process,
and volunteers must attend a mandatory induction and training day in
April, May or June 2020, held in partnership with the Environment
Agency and Police.
“At Phase 1, volunteers are ‘eyes
and ears’, trained to report what they
see and hear to a high evidential standard. Preferably, applicants should
have some enforcement related experience, but this is not essential as
training is provided. Good character
and enthusiasm coupled with the
ability to work as part of a team
within prescribed boundaries is crucial, however, which helps ensure
that the VBS continues to make such
a terrific contribution.”
Gary Thomas, the Angling Trusts
National Intelligence Manager, said:
“Today, all modern enforcement is
Intelligence-led with incoming information helping to target known problem areas and individuals. We have a
bespoke intelligence-recording system, enabling us to securely and
legally record and share incoming
information from the VBS with the
Environment Agency and our policing
partners. We have an excellent relationship with the Agency’s Intelligence Unit and an impressive conversion rate from incoming reports to
analysed and processed intelligence
logs shared via our system.”
Graeme Storey, Fisheries Manager
at the Environment Agency, said:
“The VBS network contributes to the
evidence base, shaping our fisheries
enforcement activities to where they
are most needed. Active, trained volunteers increase our enforcement
footprint and ensure that we pick up
information from a wide range of
waters, allowing us to target vulnerable locations and protect fish stocks.”
Anyone wishing to express an
interest in applying to the VBS should
contact Angling Trust National Volunteers Manager Karen Sarkar – – as
soon as possible and successful applicants will then be invited to attend a
mandatory induction day in their
region this spring.
Further information about the VBS
can be found on the Angling Trust
website and potential applicants are
urged to read this and understand the
role before applying. n
My wife told me to start fishing again. I was
told Sam had a boat and was looking for a
fishing partner. Wife said ‘have fun’. When I
got home, she asked me how we did. I
showed her a picture of Sam holding the
fish. I no longer can go fishing with Sam.
Very sad!
14 Big Carp

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