Between 13 May, when the restrictions were lifted, and 9 June 2020, over 335,000 fishing licences were sold compared to 142,000 licences sold from the start of the year to end of March 2020, a rise of over 230 per cent in less than two months. This also represents a rise of over 200,000 more than the same period in 2019.
The Environment Agency and the sport’s governing body, the Angling Trust, believe the rise was due to existing anglers embracing the opportunity to start fishing again, together with those who took up the sport for the first time or returned to the sport after a long absence – prompted by the pursuit of new hobbies during lockdown.
Jamie Cook, Angling Trust CEO, said: “We are delighted to be witnessing something of a renaissance in angling with former anglers returning to the sport and newcomers trying fishing for the first time. In these difficult times we believe that our sport has much to offer in terms social, physical and economic wellbeing.”