Marine / Charity divers recover 1,500kg of lost fishing gear

Photo: Ghost Fishing UK

THE CHARITY which came to Shetland last week to retrieve lost fishing gear from the sea says it recovered 1,500kg of equipment.

This included a trawl net from the wreck of the sunken fishing boat Froach Ban, and many creels.

Ghost Fishing UK brought up 12 divers to Shetland following representation from fishermen primarily about abandoned gill nets.

They headed out to sea on the dive boat MV Valhalla.

Members of the public also helped out washing down items found at sea.

Speaking about the volunteer effort, Ghost Fishing UK’s Christine Grosart said: “I couldn’t believe it – they just turned up and set about pressure washing, sorting and bagging ropes, net and stacking pots. We clean the ropes because they are made of polypropylene and this can be recycled by our partner, Ocean Plastic Pots. All we needed was some help getting them back to the mainland.”


Two of those volunteers, Maggie and Simon Wilcox, said: “Beach cleaning at our home in Overstrand, Norfolk during Covid kept us active and focused. We now pick beach rubbish wherever we go, home or away.

“When I read on social media that Ghost Fishing UK was heading to Shetland at the same time as us, we jumped at the opportunity to help out at the quayside and volunteer with these fabulous folks who give up their time to rid our coastal waters of ghost gear.”

The charity was also supported by companies and organisations like DFDS, Lerwick Port Authority and Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary.

It said it hopes to return to Shetland in the future, and is appealing for fishermen to report and gear losses to their dedicated reporting system here.

Read more about the charity’s trip to Shetland here.

Meanwhile the established Fishing for Litter scheme continues to go from strength to strength.

Become a supporter of Shetland News


It encourages fishermen to collect marine litter out at sea and dispose of it onshore, with more than 2,000 tonnes collected in Scotland since 2005.

That project is organised by KIMO International, a network of local governments working together for healthy seas, cleaner beaches and thriving coastal communities.

Fishermen are provided with hardwearing bags to collect marine litter they find in their nets, and when they are ashore it is placed into a skip. The scheme also covers the costs of disposal.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.