Selsey-based small boat fisherman Tony Delahunty has been appointed Chairman of a body representing the interests of Britain’s fishermen.
He takes the helm of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations (NFFO) after being unanimously elected by the federation’s executive committee. Tony took up the position at the NFFO’s annual meeting and succeeds Cornish representative Paul Trebilcock, who has held the position since 2012 and will now adopt the role of President.
Tony operates an under-10 metre vessel targeting both shellfish and whitefish from Selsey and also holds the position of Chairman of the NFFO’s South East Committee, representing the South East on the body’s Executive Committee.
Mr Delahunty said: “I am grateful for the confidence of my colleagues on the NFFO Executive. It is important that the Federation continues to reflect the diversity of our fleets and as a small boat fisherman I look forward to playing my part. What I have learnt since becoming part of the NFFO Executive is that the federation undertakes a huge amount of work on behalf of the fishing industry and that work is enhanced and strengthened by the support and involvement of grass roots fishermen on vessels of all sizes across the country’s diverse fleet.
“There are some significant challenges on the horizon, not least the upcoming implementation of the EU discard ban. Fishermen must ensure the industry makes its voice heard on how the ban will be implemented and the practicalities of the new regime managed. Unless the rules make sense at vessel level, the whole exercise is at best futile and at worst could undermine the good work done so far.”
The NFFO is the representative body for fishermen in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. All sizes and classes of fishing vessel are represented, from under-10 metre beach launched vessels, to 60 metre pelagic and distant waters vessels.