fly fishing sport fishing freshwater fishing
Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


ACA wins pollution damages against 'cautioned' farmer

The Anglers' Conservation Association (ACA) has won damages on behalf of the Tollerton Hall Fly Fishery, an ACA member fishery following a fish kill in July 2002 caused by careless spreading of slurry on farmland.
On 8th July 2002, a local farmer sprayed a field near Keyworth in Nottinghamshire with poultry-derived slurry. This 'ponded' in the field and ran off into a tributary of Willow Brook. Slurry is a very potent polluter of water and can cause a huge drop in dissolved oxygen levels. This is a major cause of fish kills in UK rivers.
In this incident many trout, chub and pike were found dead in the affected waters which included the Polser Brook at the Tollerton Hall Fly Fishery, an ACA member fishery. The Tollerton Hall Fly Fishery quickly re-stocked their waters after the pollution, and the ACA pursued the farmer concerned for the costs of this re-stocking together with a claim for the loss of angling amenity during the period of the pollution.
Although the Environment Agency promptly investigated the incident, the farmer received only a formal caution and was not prosecuted or subject to any fine. The civil claim brought by the ACA on behalf of the affected fishery provides more of a deterrent to other would-be polluters.
Guy Linley-Adams, Solicitor at the ACA said "This win demonstrates the ACA's continuing commitment to ensure that no polluter escapes justice even when the Environment Agency decides not to prosecute. That slurry can kill fish in huge numbers is hardly news to farmers and they need to be very careful when spreading it."
The ACA was founded in 1948 with the purpose of using common law to fight to protect fisheries. Since that time, the ACA has won in excess of two thousand cases and recovered over 2 million in damages, ALL of which is returned to the members we represent. Throughout our history, we have lost only three cases. At any one time, we typically have about fifty cases running. Contact point: Telephone 01568-620447, or

Martin James Fishing