North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group

The North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) is closed with all previously allocated funding committed.

The North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) is closed with all previously allocated funding committed.

Find out more here. 
The North of Tyne FLAG provides grants for commercial fishermen, the fishing industry including aquaculture.

Fisheries local action groups known as FLAGs are groups of fisheries and other marine and local sectors formed to deliver a local development strategy (LDS).

The North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) is funded through the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). The FLAG is responsible for delivering the scheme throughout their area including receving applications and making funding decision recommendations.

Northumberland County Council employ FLAG staff and are responsible for ensuring that the programme rules and regulations are implemented correctly. 

The North of Tyne FLAG area extends from North Shields in the south which is predominantly urban to Berwick-upon-Tweed in the north which is mainly rural. The FLAG area comprises 14 coastal settlements covering a distance of approximately 65 miles with a population of over 72,000. The area has a fishing fleet of 119 vessels employing over 150 people directly in the industry.

The area is characterised by its unspoilt beaches, castles, rivers and fishing ports.


In addition to the North of Tyne FLAG there are six other FLAGs:

  • Dorset and East Devon
  • North Thames
  • Cornwall and Isles of Scilly
  • Hastings
  • Holderness
Click here to view a map of the North of Tyne FLAG locations
The north of Tyne FLAG aim has translated into four objectives:

Engaging with fishermen, the fishing industry and communities to produce projects that support the sustainable development of fishing and aquaculture.

Bringing together a partnership of public, private, voluntary and community sector representatives to support the delivery of the strategy - delivering a community-led local development approach in the context of fishing and aquaculture.

Ensuring the economic viability of fishermen’s livelihoods, supporting the diversification of local economies dependent on fisheries and aquaculture into other sectors of the marine economy, and driving sustainable economic growth.

Fostering implementation of the reformed common fisheries policy (CFP).

Projects supported by the FLAG must be delivered within the coastal area from North Shields to Berwick-upon-Tweed.
North of Tyne FLAG Approved Projects

One of the new quayside landing davits for the South Pier. 
Installation of rock armour to protect the fishermen’s storage units from being damaged by the sea. 

Construction of a small external building and purchase of a refrigerated catch store allowing fish to be kept in a  better condition prior to sale.
Purchase of a refrigerated catch store allowing fish to be kept in a better condition prior to sale. 
The North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) is closed with all previously allocated funding committed.

In October 2016 the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) community-led local development (CLLD) selection panel and the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) approved the North of Tyne fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG). The FLAG was launched at the old low lights building in North Shields on 16 March 2017.

Funding is available for projects within the four priorities listed below. There is £600,000 of funding available from March 2017 until April 2019. The minimum amount of funding which may be applied for is £1,000 with a maximum of £100,000. Projects costing over £100,000 are to be applied for using the core EMFF process.
  • Development of small scale infrastructure at ports and harbours.
  • Marketing, branding and processing.
  • Training, retention, recruitment, diversification and common fisheries policy reform (CFP), and collaborative and applied research between fishermen and scientists.
Click here to find out about the Local Development Strategy​



The North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group has drawn its membership from the FLAG area from North Shields in the south to Berwick-upon-Tweed in the north, ensuring there is a strong representation from the fishing industry, public and private sectors who can influence the success of the FLAG.

Chair - Mr Alex Wallace

Alex has recently retired but in a voluntary capacity chairs both the Northumberland Association of Local Councils and his own parish council of East Bedlington. He is also vice chair of the Coast and Lowlands LEADER Local Action Group which helps draw in European monies within Northumberland.

He served in a number of roles, particularly in planning, for 18 years as a member for Wansbeck District Council. Alex was also proud to be a Harbour Commissioner at the Port of Blyth for over 12 years. He has a keen interest in the local community, local politics; enjoys foreign travel and Newcastle United. 

Vice-Chair - Mr Michael David Bould

An inshore commercial fisherman, I have lived in, and fished from the port of Amble for 37 years. I have taken part in most local fisheries, including offshore, throughout my career but now concentrate on fishing daily for shellfish and whitefish in coastal waters. I have been a Marine Management Organisation appointed committee member of Northumberland Inshore Fishing & Conservation Authority for the past 6 years. I have a keen interest in the marine and coastal environment and a good understanding of regional fishing/processing industry.

Julia Aston

Julia is the Director of Amble Development Trust which has been at the forefront of regeneration in the town for over 20 years, always recognising the importance the fishing sector plays in our overall development strategy. Julia has worked  as a consultant on fishing policies which assisted with the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).

Catherine Scott - Natural England

Katy Barrett - Natural England

Brian Burdis - North Tyneside Council

Peter Dade

Peter is the Superintendent of North Shields Fishermen’s Mission and Mission Area Officer for Amble to Hartlepool. His  work involves providing a lifeline of welfare and support to fishermen & their families, both active and retired, UK and NON UK.

Andy Dixon

Andy is the Managing Director of Caley Fisheries Ltd, North Shields and has 30 years experience working for Caley this year. Caley’s are a fishing vessel agents/managers (looking after all things associated with the fishing boats, skippers and owners, including basic accounts), fish salesmen/auctioneers, fish processors both UK and export markets, marine fuel suppliers and ships’ chandlers.
I am also a Director of North Shields Fish Quay Company.

Sarah Douglas - Alliance Fish

James Evans

Jim is the secretary for the Anglo Scottish Fishermen's Association representing twenty commercial fishing vessels based between Edinburgh and Amble. As secretary I represent the owners, crews and vessels at all levels from local port authorities up to Parliamentary Committee.

I have been a representative of the fishing industry over a 50 year period during which time I have skippered and crewed  many types of commercial fishing boats. I was for a time a Defra Sea Fishery Inspector.

Alexander Ritchie - Anglo Scottish Sea Fishing Association

David Gair - Commercial Fisherman

Nik Hanlon - North Shields Fish Quay Company

Mike Hardy

Mike is the Chief Executive Officer of Northumberland Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, previously the Northumberland Sea Fisheries Committee. He practised as a solicitor in the North East of England from 1981 until 2010, including 25 years as the agent solicitor in the north east for the Marine/Fisheries department of the MAFF/DEFRA.

Natalie Wallace - Northumberland Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority

Robert Oliver - Commercial Fisherman

Dennis Osborne

Dennis is the Training Manager for the Anglo-Scottish Seafish Training Association (ASSTA) and is responsible for all safety training and Skippers’ tickets for fishermen from Hartlepool to Berwick. The ASSTA main office is based at Amble Marina in Northumberland.


Ian Riches - JR Fisheries

Paul Robinson - Commercial Fisherman

Paul first became involved with the inshore fishing industry in 1975, aged 13 crewing and helping older fishermen of Cullercoats outside of school time. He bought his first boat aged 15 and has been a fisherman since, skippering his own boats and crewing aboard other boats until 2001. From 2001 until the present day he has worked ashore in the fishing industry as a fishing boat signwriter and undertaking boat repairs; currently fitting out a fishing boat he intends to return to fishing as soon as possible.

Paul is a founder member of the reformed Cullercoats Fishermens' Association (1984) and has been an active member of the National Federation of Fishermens' Organisation since then. He is a member of the Cullercoats Harbour Working Group which has as among it's aims to improve harbour infrastructure and working condiions for the fishermen and the wider community.

David Shiel

David was born and bred in Seahouses where he was a commercial fisherman all his working life. Previously he was the Chairman of the Anglo-Scottish Fishermen’s Association and Vice President of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation. He is involved in local politics and is a member of North Sunderland Parish Council. David was a member of the RNLI for thirty-eight years with ten of those as the Coxswain. Now seventy years old, he still has the fishing industry and the sea at heart. 

Ed Tame

Ed founded The Fresh Shrimp Company in 2012, a company that will become the first successful land based producer of King Prawns in the UK and within 5 years the largest in Europe. Since then, he has proven his ability to manage the business and navigate the difficult early stages of such an aquaculture venture. He has successfully negotiated commercial leases for land and built key relationships with large power producing companies. Having designed, developed, trialled and market tested the system and its prawns, Ed hopes he can bring a broad spectrum of skills and resources to the North East FLAG board.

Daniel Wise

I’m a Regeneration Officer for North Tyneside Council and I project manage regeneration projects on North Shields Fish Quay. As part of this role I set up and manage the North Shields Fish Quay Coastal Community Team which aims to improve the economy of the area and make it a great place to live, work and visit. I also worked closely with NCC and Northumberland Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority on submitting the FLAG bid.

I also project manage various other schemes across the Borough, including new Customer First Centres (libraries) in Wallsend and North Shields town centre and most recently a new business centre for the Swans site in Wallsend.
Latest information and meeting dates

Meetings 2019 - 2020

The next FLAG meeting to be confirmed.

If you would like to know more about the North of Tyne FLAG contact Simon Baxter,

I visit harbours, ports and landing sites within the FLAG area informing possible applicants of the funding available, leading to the generation of applications. I also provide sign-posting to other funding streams if an applicant's requirements do not fit with the North of Tyne FLAG priorities.

North of Tyne Fisheries Local Action Group
Corporate Programmes & External Funding
Economy & Regeneration Service
Place Directorate
Northumberland County Council
County Hall
NE61 2EF