Chesterfield man heavily fined after admitting fishing without a licence

A Chesterfield man has been heavily fined after pleading guilty to fishing without a licence.
A Chesterfield man has been heavily fined after pleading guilty to fishing without a licence.

A Chesterfield man has been heavily fined after pleading guilty to fishing without a licence.

Bradley Topham, 22, of North Crescent, Duckmanton, admitted the offence, which happened at Harlesthorpe Dam, Clowne, on May 12.

He was ordered to pay a total penalty of £431 after appearing at Northampton Magistrates' Court.

An annual fishing licence would have cost him £30.

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James Anderson, fisheries enforcement officer for the Environment Agency, said: “The case shows how seriously the courts take these offences and acts as a reminder to anglers of the importance of having a fishing licence. We hope it will provide a deterrent to any angler who is thinking of fishing without a licence.

“We would also like to remind anglers who wish to buy their licence online of the importance of buying their fishing licence directly from GOV.UK as they will receive a reference number allowing them to go fishing on the same day.

“Customers who use third party sites may be charged more and might not get added to the official database as quickly.”

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Thousands of anglers each year are prosecuted for not having a fishing licence.

Income from fishing licence sales is used to fund Environment Agency work to protect and improve fish stocks and fisheries, including improving habitats for fish and facilities for anglers, and tackling illegal fishing.