Heysham Flat Seed Mussel Fishery 2020

Heysham Flat Seed Mussel Fishery will open to Byelaw 3 permit holders on 3rd August 2020 and will run until 31st December 2020, with the exception of bank holiday Monday (31st August 2020). The authorisation is posted below.

Access permits must be obtained from Lancaster City Council to attend the fishery.

Heysham Flat Seed Mussel Fishery Authorisation

Authorisation to Fish Undersized Mussels from Heysham Flat Skear 2020


All current NWIFCA Byelaw 3 Permit Holders

Date: 22/07/20
With effect from: 03/08/20
Expiry Date: 31/12/20

All current Byelaw 3 permit holders are hereby authorised, under Byelaw 3, paragraph 6 (Minimum Sizes) to fish undersized mussels from Heysham Flat, in the permitted fishing and transiting area as defined in paragraph 2 and illustrated in Annex A, and are responsible for complying with the conditions given below at paragraph 1.

1. Conditions of Authorisation

This authorisation is issued subject to the following conditions.

(a) It is only valid for the period from 03/08/2020 to 31/12/2020, excluding Bank Holiday Monday 31st August 2020.

(b) That the mussels shall only be gathered by hand or with a rake.

(c) That fishing shall take place only from Monday to Friday inclusive, during daylight hours, defined as one hour before sunrise and one hour after sunset.

(d) The NWIFCA will close the fishery during periods of prolonged cold weather.

(e) The authorisation is only valid for current Byelaw 3 permit holders. It does not allow any other person to take or remove undersized mussels.

(f) This authorisation does not exonerate the holder from other sea fisheries legislation, nor does it prejudice any other consents the holder may need to obtain nor does it override or provide permission to go over private land.

(g) Any fishing taking place under this authorisation shall be carried out in accordance with the Authority’s Code of Conduct for Intertidal Shellfisheries.

(h) Gathering of mussel and transit by ATVs (quad bikes) or tractors in the excluded area defined in paragraph 2 and illustrated in Annex A is prohibited.

2. Definition of Permitted Fishing and Transiting Area

Part of that area within Morecambe Bay known as Heysham Flat Skear as illustrated on the map attached at Annex A, excluding the area bound by the following co-ordinates:



(Decimal Degrees)


(Decimal Degrees)


(Degrees, Decimal Minutes)


(Degrees, Decimal Minutes)

A 54.055396 -2.912977 54° 3.323” N 2° 54.778” W
B 54.056080 -2.911510 54° 3.364” N 2° 54.69” W
C 54.057690 -2.908111 54° 3.461” N 2° 54.486” W
D 54.056029 -2.907592 54° 3.361” N 2° 54.455” W


3. Advisory Notes

(a) When fishing, or when operating vehicles in the vicinity of Heysham Flat Skear, take care to avoid live colonies of the Honeycomb Worm. These are a protected species, and damaging them could lead to a fine of up to £20,000, revoking of authorisations and closure of the fishery.

(b) NWIFCA officers have the power to withdraw authorisations at any point should the need arise, and will consult with Natural England throughout the duration of the fishery. Should there be concerns that losses of mussel around Morecambe Bay is occurring which will impact on the available bird feeding resource, the NWIFCA will withdraw authorisations and close the fishery.

(c) Avoid driving vehicles over the seed mussels as far as possible. Using a single access route will avoid unnecessary damage to the mussel stock.

This authorisation may be revoked by the NWIFCA at any time and any breach of the terms or conditions of this authorisation shall make it null and void.

By Order of the Authority,

Stephen Atkins

Chief Executive


Annex A – Heysham Flat Seed Mussel 2020 – Protection of Sabellaria alveolata on the fringes of the skear

Gathering of mussel and transit by ATVs (quad bikes) or tactors in the excluded area is prohibited