Welcome to the Kent & Essex
Sea Fisheries Committee Website
The Committee has established as its principle aim:-
To manage, regulate, develop and protect the fisheries within the area
of the Kent and Essex Sea Fisheries District with a view to balancing the needs of the fisheries and the sustainability
of the marine environment, both now and in the future.
The Committee's Sea Fisheries district covers an area of over 1,200 square statute miles
and extends from Dungeness in Kent to the northern boundary of Essex on the River Stour.
The Sea Fisheries District extends into the Thames Estuary up to Mucking Creek and seaward to the 6 mile limit, which
due to drying sand banks extends up to 15 miles offshore.
The Committee is, in common with all other Sea Fisheries Committees, a regulating body
and has powers under the Sea Fisheries Regulation Act 1966 to make byelaws to be observed within its District. In addition to enforcing its own byelaws the Sea Fisheries Committee also enforces national and EU
legislation relating to Sea Fisheries within its District.
In addition the Committee is also responsible for The Thames Estuary Cockle Fishery Order
1994 and the River Roach Oyster Fishery Order 1992.
How does the Committee work?
The Kent and Essex Sea Fisheries Committee is one of twelve such Committees and was established
by Statutory Order made in May 1890. The Committee comprises representatives
from five Local Authorities within its area, together with 9 members appointed by Defra and 1 member
appointed by The Environment Agency. The total membership of the Committee
The principal enforcement functions of the Committee relate to minimum landing sizes for
fish and shellfish, the management of the cockle fishery, mesh size requirements for fishing gear and specifications
for the setting of fixed nets and pots. The Committee can make byelaws to address local fisheries management issues (subject
to confirmation by Defra).
The staff complement comprises
of 1 Chief Fishery Officer, 1 Fishery Officer (Kent), 2 Fishery Officers (Essex), 4 Crew/Fishery Officers (who crew the offshore
patrol vessel), an Office Manager, and 2 part time Clerical Assistants. This is spread over two sites,
with the main office in Ramsgate and the second office in Brightlingsea.