|Welcome to the April newsletter, |
including spring recipes
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OUR FRIENDS IN LYME BAY
I hope you are enjoying some of this genuine spring weather. I’ve spent the last two weekends flat out in the garden, sowing, potting up and planting out - with a dash down to the beach at Lyme Regis late each Sunday, to enjoy the sparkling of the sunshine on the water - and, inevitably, buy the kids an ice cream. I haven’t got my fishing rod out yet, but it won’t be long now...
As many of you know Lyme Bay is the site of one of the most progressive and successful marine reserves in the UK - indeed, in the whole of Europe. It has blazed a trail in proving that the best way to look after our inshore waters is by working closely with the local fishing community to help manage a sustainable approach to fishing. That means helping fishermen to work within the limits set by the terms of the reserve - no bottom trawling or dredging - but still respecting and nurturing the vital part played by harvesting fish and shellfish, both to local livelihoods and the culture of the community in this stunning part of the Jurassic Coast. It’s progress that I have been proud to document both in Hugh’s Fish Fight and, more recently, in Big Blue UK for BBC1.
Managing this difficult and complicated work is an outstanding marine conservation charity called the Blue Marine Foundation, working closely with Plymouth University. They are doing - right here on the Dorset coast - work that can and will inform the way our seas are stewarded all over the world. So it’s no surprise to me that Blue has been shortlisted for a prestigious Natura 2000 Award, recognising their amazing work and its palpable achievements in regenerating the fantastically diverse sea life in the Lyme Bay Fisheries and Conservation Reserve.
And I’m guessing it’ll be no surprise to you…. that I’m now asking you to support Blue now by voting for them to win this award! It will be a huge boost to them and for the fishermen of Lyme Bay, and would undoubtedly help secure more funding for this brilliant project.
If you’ve ever visited us at River Cottage there’s an excellent chance you’ve enjoyed some fish or shellfish - day-netted pollack perhaps, or line caught bass or mackerel, or creel caught crab - sustainably caught by Lyme Bay fishermen. We want to go on serving wonderful seafood like this for years - decades - to come. And the local fishermen want to be sure that another generation can follow them in making a sustainable living catching fish in these waters.
To help both these things to happen, and find out more about Blue and their work in Lyme Bay, please click here. I hope you’ll be inspired to vote for Blue:
And now I just have to decide whether it’s back to the veg patch, or down to the beach. And since it looks like another sunny evening ahead, and it won’t be dark till nearly 9 o’clock, I reckon there might just be time for both…
Wishing you all a lush and productive spring,
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