The one person fishing from Greystones Harbour before it closed has been significantly disadvantaged. He should have got facilities 2 years ago when it was reopened after being rebuilt. I have been calling for this but nothing was done.
A number of other people have been claiming to be local fishermen but none has a fishing licence (a Certificate of Registry for Sea Fishing Boat) as there is only one in the area. Without one it is illegal to land and sell fish. So they could not have been fishing and have not suffered any disadvantage. Anybody is free to land fish on the harbour beach or improved slipways as anglers do.
The Government refused to fund essential repairs or renewal for Greystones Harbour. It does not recognise it as a fishing port. As a result the harbour has been rebuilt as a town leisure harbour using €70m of private money, over a 1,000 local people of all income groups are using boats in it, many more than before. The youth sea training facilities for rowing, sailing and Sea Scouts are much improved and heavily used.
The harbour is small, a fifth the size of Wicklow or Arklow, and facilities are much more closely packed than other ports which are Government funded. There is not the space for a commercial fishing port though the one disadvantaged person can and must be accommodated.
In all ports that I can think of the fishing and leisure parts are separated, probably because of the different usage and noise patterns as well as the occasional smells which can be strong if not handled properly. A commercial fishing port needs different facilities such as ice, washing and fish handling which don’t exist at Greystones.