Confusion reigns over use of boats and watersports on the Broads after prime minister’s speech

The Broads Authority has stated angling is 'an acceptable sport from May 13 but the coarse fishing s

The Broads Authority has stated angling is 'an acceptable sport from May 13 but the coarse fishing season remains closed until June 15. Pic: Archant - Credit: Archant

The Broads Authority is “urgently consulting” the government on exactly what activities can take place on the Norfolk Broads.

It comes as the prime minister’s speech relaxing some of the coronavirus restrictions has left many confused over exactly what is permitted, even after some clarification.

The Broads Authority tweeted its confusion yesterday and has now issued a statement saying it is still trying to get an answer on whether people can return to its waterways or not.

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A statement on the website says: “In light of revised government guidelines issued on May 10, the Authority is urgently consulting Defra (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) to seek clarification regarding how this is interpreted in the Broads, in particular whether private boaters are able to use their vessels on the waterways from Wednesday May 13 onwards.

“In the meantime, the UK government has updated its general guidance on what you can and can’t do as of Wednesday. While the advice is still to stay at home as much as possible, from then onwards you will be able to leave your home and drive to exercise or spend time outdoors multiple times a day.

“This means that members of the public can now drive to access public spaces such as footpaths and cycleways within the Broads as long as they follow all of the conditions around social distancing from people that are not within your household. There is no limit on the distance that is acceptable to travel for exercise or to access outdoor space, however only day trips are permitted.

“Angling is also specifically named as an acceptable sport from May 13 (the coarse fishing season remains closed until June 15 inclusive). Please bear with us whilst we confirm what the guidance entails regarding paddle and water sports. We aim to issue more comprehensive information.”

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