Former Ukip leader Nigel Farage is expected to join furious fisherman when they set fire to a boat on Whitstable beach tonight in protest over the “betrayal” of the British fishing industry in Brexit negotiations.
It will part of a nationwide coastal demonstration by trawlermen who claim they have been left high and dry by the “capitulation” of the Government, which they fear will leave Britain trapped in the “disastrous” Common Fisheries Policy.
Mr Farage have previously supported the Fishing For Leave campaign and last month joined fishermen who dumped haddock into the Thames in a stunt outside Parliament.
He said: ‘They told us they would take back control of our waters in 2019 – that is not happening. We are now told at the start of 2021 it may happen.”
The demonstration will see a flotilla of up to 40 fishing boats from around the Kent and Essex coast gather off Whitstable harbour at around 5pm before beginning a slow oval steam, east to west.
At 7pm they will muster close to the harbour and ten minutes later, a bonfire will be lit on the foreshore, topped by a boat accompanied by the sound of horns and fireworks.
One of the protest organisers Chris Attenborough said: “Our nation’s fishing and communities were surrendered to the EU with our own government’s complicity and have suffered immeasurably through mis-rule and mismanagement.
“Brexit provides one great opportunity to automatically repatriate our waters and resources, worth £6 to £8 billion, to national control and to start new policy to rejuvenate our coastal communities and industry.
“Heartbreakingly, our government has capitulated to obeying EU law after Brexit, consigning us to remaining trapped in the disastrous Common Fisheries Policy until January 2021, and possibly forever in exchange for a trade deal.
“We have nobody at the table to fight for our interests. The EU can scrap relative stability and the 12 mile limit. The EU will be unimpeded in implementing further quota cuts or full enforcement of the ill-founded discard ban.
“The purpose of the protest is to take the industry’s plight to the public who are equally sickened by the government’s actions and to pressure MPs not to allow this surrender of our nation’s greatest renewable resource.
“We have waited and hoped for 20 years to escape and the industry must mobilise to show politicians we won’t be sacrificed without a fight.”