Angling Trust and Angling Development Board Merger Completed
The Angling Development Board (ADB) has today become part of the Angling Trust following a merger of the two organisations, their assets and staff, to create a single representative and national governing body for the sport of angling in England which employs more than 40 professional staff, including those employed by Fish Legal, the legal arm of the Angling Trust, which operates throughout the UK.
This is the latest and most significant stage in the unification of angling in England since the formation of the Angling Trust in 2009. The addition of the ADB to the Angling Trust will include 700 licensed coaches, 12 regional and local angling development officers, 30 County Angling Action Groups and a wide range of ongoing programmes and projects at a local and national scale to increase participation in angling by people of all backgrounds and ages.
Over the past 3 years, the ADB has worked with Sport England and the Environment Agency and has involved more than 17,000 people in participation events, has developed and implemented a single licensing system for coaches, and has raised nearly £300,000 in match funding from local sources.
All this work will continue under the banner of the Angling Trust and will be integrated with other elements of the Trust’s work, such as the management of national and international competitions.
The first phase of a funding bid is currently being prepared for the next round of Sport England Funding for the period April 2013 to 2017. This bid will form part of a national angling participation action plan which will be developed over the coming months in partnership with other organisations in the sector to create a coherent plan to sustain and grow angling participation and the social, economic and environmental benefits arising from angling.
ADB Chairman David Moore said: “This merger creates an organisation which is greater than the sum of its parts. It combines two strong, professional teams and the work of angling’s development organisation with the responsibilities and ambitions of the sport’s membership body. Campaigns and legal work to protect and improve angling access and fish stocks are equivalent to other sports’ campaigns for playing fields and they safeguard opportunities for more people to go fishing. The creation of our pathway events for talented young anglers will increase the quality of those in our future Team England Angling and will provide more opportunities for sponsors to support our national teams. We have come a long way in 5 years and built the new foundations that our sport needed for a changing world.’’
Angling Trust Chairman Mike Heylin said: “This is an historic day for angling. Previous attempts at unification have failed over the past 50 years, but no-one can be in any doubt today that we have at last a high profile and successful organisation to represent anglers and to develop, promote and grow the sport of angling for generations to come. This merger will increase our capacity to find positive and creative solutions to the challenges facing angling in the modern age. We must aim for a time when anyone who wants to take up the wonderful sport of angling has good information about where to get access to safe, good quality fishing near where they live, how to fish responsibly, where to get high quality coaching and how they can find other people to go fishing with through clubs, social fishing networks or matches.”
Lisa O’Keefe, Director of Sport for Sport England, witnessed the signatures of the two Chairmen in London and said: "This is an exciting development for the sport of angling and one which Sport England supports wholeheartedly. The Angling Trust as a single governing body for the sport will be able to build on the infrastructure developed by the Angling Development Board over the past five years to develop the sport and get more people fishing regularly."
Richard Wightman, Angling Manager for the Environment Agency said: "The Environment Agency has encouraged and helped angling to become more united over the past ten years. This merger is another significant step in that process. We have been investing in delivery of angling and fisheries objectives with both parties and look forward to continuing and increasing that productive partnership with the newly-unified organisation."