People, organisations and businesses across the country are now profoundly impacted by the coronavirus. Whilst the situation and associated Government advice continues to be updated please note that the LLAIA recognises its responsibilities to its members, permit holders, visiting anglers and possible wider impact to society concerning this disease. Given the current Government advice then at this point in time we wish to confirm that members, permit holders and visiting anglers should continue angling provided they do so responsibly and in such a way as not to contravene the current advice by Government. The key points that must be observed currently are summarised below including links to the relevant Government website pages outlining advice which you should regularly check for updated information.
- During this time until advised otherwise that either Royal Mail services are being curtailed or our office facilities are closed then renewals are still being processed in the normal manner. Those members still to renew should send their renewal form and payment to the office, or pay via PayPal on our website and post/email renewal for to us and 2020 permits will be posted back.
- As per current Government advice those members over the age of 70 or under the age of 70 with an underlying health problem should practice social distancing for the next twelve weeks. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults
- For those members that are able to go fishing, again we would encourage the Government advice given and that “If you meet others when you are outdoors (for example, on a walk) ensure that you stay at least 2 meters away”. We hope that normal fishing etiquette gives a far greater separation distance amongst members and anglers, but consideration must be given if taking a break for coffee/lunch, car sharing etc when social contact distances can be far less between people. We would also suggest given that the virus can be transferred when touching hard surfaces that members and anglers do not share/touch fishing rods/tackle other than their own. Carrying alcohol based hand gels and using them after opening gates/styles/doors may assist in preventing the virus transfer especially touching your face with your hands should be prevented as much as possible.
- We are aware that the LLTNPA have closed all the Park Authority offices and toilet facilities, the Duncan Mills slip is still open but it is not being manned but Park Authority Ranger patrols still going ahead on the Loch so if going afloat please make sure your boat Reg is clearly displayed for 2020 when in a motorised vessel. The Park Ranger provision still applies should you get into difficulty or require to call upon their services.
- Our Water Bailiffs both full time and volunteers are still actively patrolling the Loch Lomond catchment area and these patrols will be increased over the next three months and despite the COVID-19 outbreak and will enforce all appropriate laws, so any person found fishing without a valid permit will be dealt with appropriately as permits and memberships are still readily available at all our outlets, so fishing without a permit will not be a valid excuse during this outbreak. Only the Visit Scotland Office in Balloch has ceased trading due to the outbreak. We are also working closely with our Police Scotland wildlife officers on this matter.
- The Committee and Office bearers can still be contacted via the normal contact links on our website and L.L.A.I.A and normal Committee business will continue as normal during this period and may require the use of online meetings to take place if we can’t meet in person.
- The latest Scottish Government advice can be found at https://t.co/kZjGNz2EDe
- The latest health advice from NHS Scotland can be found at https://t.co/l7rqArB6Qu
- This is a totally unprecedented situation in the history of the L.L.A.I.A and we all on the committee wish you and your families good health over the coming months and ask all our members and anglers to follow the very latest Government advice and not only to look after themselves but more importantly think of those that could be affected by your actions.
This information is valid as of date of publishing, should anyone have any angling related comments or concerns arising from this situation then please contact us by email.