The UK may not have actually posted-off its Article 50 notification just yet – but visiting Penarth today is one of the British Naval vessels which may soon be charged with seeing-off any EU trawlers spotted trespassing in what will again become British waters.
The Fisheries Patrol vessel “Cranogwen” – now berthed in Penarth waiting-out the weather before heading on for Swansea – is capable of reaching a top speed of 18 knots.
In the Celtic Sea (between Wales and Ireland) Crangowen currently as no choice but to impose on British trawlers the hated EU regulations which allow France to catch far more fish than British registered trawlers:-
- The EU allows France to catch 300% more Dover Sole than British trawlers ,
- The EU allows France to catch 400% more cod than British trawlers
- The EU allows France to catch 500% more haddock than British trawlers
Britain’s fishery patrol vessels are not quite able to outnumber the huge fleets of predatory foreign trawlers plundering UK fish . There are only 4 Fishery Protection Vessels like “Cranogwen” to cover the entire UK coastline.
Although her top -speed of 18 knots won’t out-run most powerful EU and foreign trawlers, the vessel is expected to play a key role in turning the tide and ultimately winning-back control of UK waters for British fishing fleets.(Experts claim that foreign trawlers often have “illegally upgraded” engines which give them enough of a turn of speed to show British patrol boats a clean pair of heels.)
The government says however that modern fishery protection isn’t about high-speed chases – and that environmentalists ought to be pleased that the diesel fuel consumption of boats like Cranogwen is much less than that of speedier craft.
Cranogwen is named after the bardic pseudonym adopted by the Victorian Welsh female sea-captain Sarah Jane Rees (1839-1916) . Captain Rees ecame the first woman to win the crown at the National Eisteddfod of Wales in 1865, beating many well-known male bards of the day. She also became a public speaker, toured the USA, established the Women’s Temperance Movement and founded a Welsh-language journal for women.