Devon and Severn IFCA undertake regular consultations relating to different fishing activities. These provide you with an opportunity to have your say. When a consultation is about to begin, we directly notify all our permit holders (Fishers) and all of our contacts on our consultation mailing list. Providing us with an email address helps us keep you informed. We also circulate a free E- newsletter to everyone on our mailing list.

If you want to be directly notified of the consultations then please contact us and tell us.

New Consultations

A Call for Information - Hand Gathering

D&S IFCA are inviting you to have your say on how, in your view, the many different hand gathering fishing methods could or should be managed in the D&S IFCA District. The information that is provided can potentially be added to D&S IFCA’s baseline information. 

What is Hand Gathering?

There are many different methods that fall under the term “Hand Gathering”. Examples would be hand collection of mussels, cockles, clams, winkles, limpets and other molluscan species. Other examples would include raking for cockles and clams, as well as seaweed harvesting and spear fishing to capture various sea fish.

D&S IFCA has already collected some information about the use of crab tiles and the activity of bait digging. This Call for Information is focussed on the remaining fishing methods.

D&S IFCA are circulating an electronic information flyer that provides more information on the methods that we have defined as hand gathering. The information flyer also gives you some information about our legacy byelaws that are being reviewed and some of our research work.

What do D&S IFCA want to know?

  • Do you conduct any of the hand gathering activities we have set out?
  • Do you know other people who conduct hand gathering fishing activities?
  • Where do you or others conduct hand gathering methods?
  • How often do you or others conduct hand gathering activities?
  • Do you think there is an issue with any of the hand gathering activities?
  • Do you have any comments about the current Byelaws that are relevant to hand gathering fishing methods?
  • Is further management or different restrictions required?

How to respond?

This is not a questionnaire, but you do have different options to choose from to submit your response by the closing date of 26th July 2019.

1.    Contact us via email:

2.    Telephone us or come along in person to our office and speak to one of our officers during dedicated time slots which are as follows:

Tuesday 2nd July                                 (16.00 to 18.00 hrs)

Thursday 11th July                              (16.00 to 18.00 hrs)

Saturday 20th July                               (10.00 to 12.00 hrs)

Thursday 25th July                              (16.00 to 18.00 hrs)

Have Your Say on the Proposed D&S IFCA Exemptions Byelaw 2019

On 13th June 2019, members of the D&S IFCA Byelaw & Permitting Sub-Committee (B&PSC) agreed to make the Exemptions Byelaw 2019 so it could be subjected to a period of formal consultation. D&S IFCA are required to advertise the proposed byelaw and provide you with the opportunity to read it, along with the Impact Assessment that accompanies it. You have the opportunity to register your support or object to the introduction of the Exemptions Byelaw 2019.The responses will be collated and considered by the B&PSC after the 15th August 2019.

Section 155 & 156

Marine and Coastal Access Act

Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the above Act, Devon & Severn Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority intends to apply to the Minister for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for the confirmation of the following Byelaw.

What is the Exemptions Byelaw and what does it achieve?

The proposed Byelaw enables the Authority to consider and potentially grant or decline permission for the conducting of an activity that would otherwise be a contravention of a Byelaw or a Permit Condition within a Byelaw that the Authority has inherited or introduced.

There are different scenarios where the Authority and stakeholders can benefit from the issuing of authorisations. This would include scientific work that could add to an existing evidence base or contribute to a longer-term data set, potential to explore new fisheries through pilot projects such as aquaculture or allow other activities such as gear recovery from a Marine Protected Area to be controlled.

The Authority has recognised that without an Exemptions Byelaw in place there could be an adverse impact on the Authority’s ability to manage inshore fisheries as the opportunity to gain a better insight or understanding of the marine environment would be more restricted.

Any permission will only be issued, where in the view of the Authority, the permission does not materially detract from the Authority’s duties as set out within section 153 and 154 of the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009.

The Byelaw provides guidance regarding how any such application is considered and processed within a specified time. The application will be determined within 60 days of receipt of the application.

The Byelaw also provides the potential applicant with transparency regarding their responsibility to assemble the information or evidence as determined by the Authority so that the Authority can fully consider the application for an authorisation in accordance with the relevant paragraphs. If required, the Authority will be able to advise the potential applicant or applicants regarding the type and detail of information and evidence that must be submitted to support their application and the subsequent assessment of it.

A full text version of the proposed Exemptions Byelaw and the associated Impact Assessment can be viewed by clicking on the links or by contacting the office for a hard copy.

How to comment?

Any person wishing to comment, support or object to the confirmation of the above Byelaw must do so in writing to:

Marine Conservation and Enforcement Team,

Marine Management Organisation,

Lancaster House,

Hampshire Court,

Newcastle Upon Tyne,


(or by 15th August 2019 and must send a copy to the Acting Chief Officer at Devon and Severn IFCA, Brixham Laboratory, Freshwater Quarry, Brixham, Devon, TQ5 8BA.

Completed Consultations

Bait Digging

Thank you to all those that participated in our information gathering exercise which ended on 26th April 2019.

All responses were summarised into a report which was discussed by the Byelaw & Permitting Sub Committee on 16th May 2019.

You can read the report here.

Crab Tiles

We would like to thank all those that provided information during the period 4th January to 8th February 2019.

The responses were summarised into a report which was presented and discussed by members of the D&S IFCA Byelaw and Permitting Sub-Committee on 26th February 2019. The report will be discussed again later in 2019 when options for managing this and other hand working fishing activities will be examined in greater depth. 

You can read the report here.

Page updated on 1st July 2019.