Stan Rennie, Hartlepool fisherman, interviewed by The Observer over mystery sealife deaths in the proposed freeport area of Tees Valley

a mass of dead crustaceans on sand

Lives and livelihoods destroyed and yet the politicians are still glossing over what has happened. Why??  

This is blatant marine ecocide and the rich, powerful perpetrators should compensate those whose lives and livelihoods have been destroyed!

Read the Observer article that fisherman Stan Rennie was interviewed for – link below:

Observer article : ‘We just want the truth’: British coastal towns fight for answers over mystery sealife deaths

The Observer, 3 september 2022

“Question mark over freeport in Tees Valley after ecological disaster puts communities in the north east of England at loggerheads with the government”


Stan Rennie writes:

The Observer reporter, Shanti Das phoned me when I was at sea yesterday afternoon.

I’m fishing 7 1/2 miles North of Hartlepool, trying to get out of the affected zone, but had to move the gear back a bit, to get on ground for the end weights to hold, in case the weather got worse than forecast. I won’t fish my normal ground – not landing anything I wouldn’t eat myself.

There’s little life on the grounds after steaming 1 1/2 hrs to get there, then the same back, I’ve been averaging a dozen lobsters out of 140 pots, steaming 3 hours a day, instead of the usual 1/2 hour, I won’t fish inside, moved to deeper waters, when I’ve fished the last 48 years, working Longscar Rock at the Mouth of the Tees.  

Best Day 18, up North, worst day 6, instead of any other year a basket or two.

Fuel now £40 to £50/day instead of the usual £15 on the doorstep, bait on top.

I’ve been going forward, on down to break even, or £15 to £20 profit/day, for 8hrs work, the very odd day £100, to make something at the end of the week, I know I’m single handed/small scale, and feel I’m out my depth, speaking up, when many of you are Big Fishers –  but it’s still my full time job, and the gear is all I can manage. I’m putting weather away, that I wouldn’t normally have to go in, up to last October.

Yesterday ended up a snotty run home SE, talking to the reporter, getting threw about, with my worst catch in 48 years.

140 pots worked

1  lobster

12 brown crabs

Not another sign of life, no berried hens, small lobsters, small crabs, hermits, velvets, urchins – NOWT!

The catch will fall @£40 short of the cost of going to sea.

ANOTHER HOUCHEN LIE going through my mind, all the way home!!

Catches have recovered my arse – the ecosystem is in dire straits, even velvets as rare as rocking horse shite!

Thinking of the Marine Life lost, and those who were fishing, who haven’t made it through, and those who might follow them! 

I haven’t even had 1 fishtrap in the water this season, normally have up to 40 in the water, at some time of the season – what’s the point?

More time and expense!

What’s going to be left of the local stock after this month, when the migratory stock have gone or been caught-

Same as from The Orca Dredge – NOWT???

More Hardship to follow on, like last winter?

Over half the Hartlepool potting fleet going or gone- how many to follow?

Unless anyone has seen a full recovery anywhere, to give us all hope?

Stan Rennie