Granville fishermen have been protesting again – this time over fishing rights around the waters of islands closer to home.
Last week, around 20 fishermen held a ‘manifestation’ in the Norman port over plans to restrict fishing within three miles of Chausey, a cluster of French islands 11 miles from Granville which are geologically part of the Channel Islands.
The demonstration occurred two months after around 70 French boats – most from Granville – sailed to Jersey to protest about their right to fish in Jersey’s waters.
As newspaper Ouest France put it last week: “When it's not Jersey, it's Chausey”.
The fishermen’s concerns specifically relate to Chausey being designated as a protected natural area under the European Union’s ‘Natura 2000’ initiative.
Pictured: Most boats in May's fishing dispute off Jersey came up from Granville.
Launched in 1992, Natura 2000 is designed to protect the most seriously threatened habitats and species across Europe. A consultation exercise is currently going on see if the designation should apply to Chaussey.
Granville fishermen are concerned that it will prevent them from accessing fertile scallop grounds close to the islands.
Their protest last week was timed to coincide with a meeting that established a group of interested parties to oversee the Natura 2000 designation.
A local politician told Ouest France: “There is no intention of reducing fishing grounds. It is simply a matter of setting up this steering committee for a sustainable and concerted management of the archipelago.”
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