As part of her duties, as the Defra website has told, “Fisheries Minister Victoria Prentis today (Tuesday 25 August) visited Tenby, where she met representatives from the fisheries and seafood sector to learn first-hand about the experiences of this resilient coastal community … Minister Prentis met with Harbour Master, Chris Salisbury, and local fishermen to discussed safety at sea - an important issue for all UK fishing communities - and was shown some of the most vital species to the industry, including lobster, crab, whelk, sea bass, scallops and locally-grown oysters”. Most interesting.
Mackerel (not caught by Victoria Prentis)
There was more. “The Fisheries Minister reaffirmed her commitment to supporting all parts of the UK in overcoming the hardship brought by the pandemic, and to taking full advantage of the opportunities available to the seafood and fisheries sectors as we leave the outdated Common Fisheries Policy”. The Defra Twitter feed posted on the visit.
After telling “Wales has an extraordinary wealth of seafood species and fisheries expertise. I am thankful for witnessing first-hand the resilience of the fishing community in Tenby”, she added “A really enjoyable visit today The Fisheries Bill gives the UK powers to control our waters, set fishing opportunities and reform fisheries management. It will also give fresh powers to the DAs and communities like Tenby”. She was, it seems, on a roll,
Until, that is, she returned to the subject and told anyone not yet asleep “Getting in the mood for the fish bill next week with a good day catching mackerel off the Pembrokeshire coast”. There, was, though, a problem: she would not be catching any mackerel, or indeed any other fish, with a rod that did not have a line. And hers didn’t.
The people at Evolve Politics helpfully magnified the relevant part of her photo, showing the reel bereft of anything resembling a line, and asked simply “Why you lyin”. Worse, as Mike Hind pointed out, she was doing this as part of her duties as an MP - meaning We The People were paying. “British taxpayers are funding you to pretend you're fishing”.
Also, her constituency is rather a long way from the Pembrokeshire coast, as Nick Stevenson observed: “‘Of course, Banbury is most famous for its mackerel smokers.’ Victoria's Book of Secret Landlocked North Oxfordshire”. There we are, heading into an uncertain post-Brexit future, and this is the level of ministerial expertise on display.
One way of preserving fish stocks, mind. Look on the bright side.
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