Do I Need A Rod Licence
There are a number of rules in place when you are taking part in any type of fishing across the UK including the need to purchase a rod licence. If you fail to fish with a licence you can be prosecuted and fined up to £2500.
Always carry your licence with you when fishing.
In this article, we are going to explain what type of licence you require and cover some of the main rules that you should be aware of.
What type of Rod Licence do I need
You will need to purchase a rod fishing licence to fish for the following species with a rod and reel setup.
- freshwater fish
- smelt or eel
If you are fishing in the River Tweed in England you will not require a licence.
If your child is under the age of 13 you will not need to purchase a licence.
If your child is 13 to 16 they will require a Junior Licence which is free.
Types of Licence
Trout, coarse fish and eel licence
This licence is designed to allow you to fish for non-migratory trout and all freshwater fish. Freshwater fish would include species such as Carp, Tench, Bream and Rudd.
If you are planning on heading down to your local lake and fish using a floater rod, this is the licence you will require. I find this is not as clear as it could be on the official government website.
Many anglers fish in different manners such as fishing with two rods, this licence allows for one of the following uses.
- 1 rod for non-migratory trout in rivers and canals
- up to 2 rods for non-migratory trout in lakes and reservoirs
- up to 2 rods for freshwater fish
Some carp anglers, for instance, will fish using 3 rods and so the above licence will not be sufficient. You would have to purchase two licences to cover all three of these rods, but the best approach is to purchase a 12-month licence that will allow for up to 3 rods. You will see later that these 12-month licences are much better value for money compared to the daily ones.
As a side note, you should always check with your local fishery to see how many rods they allow per angler. I have seen over the years many smaller and popular venues restrict the number of rods you are allowed to fish with, this eases the pressure on the fish and allows everyone to fish comfortably.
Salmon and sea trout licence
This licence is designed to allow you to fish for salmon, sea trout, non-migratory trout and all freshwater fish.
Much like the trout, coarse fish and eel licence, this licence allows for one of the following uses
- 1 rod for salmon, sea trout and non-migratory trout in rivers and canals
- up to 2 rods for salmon, sea trout and non-migratory trout in lakes and reservoirs
- up to 3 rods for freshwater fish
You will see that this licence allows for three rods for freshwater fish, if you are going to purchase a 12 months licence I would opt for the first trout, coarse fish and eel licence as this will cover three rods and is much better value for money.
As a side note, in your fishing, you may use a marker and a spod rod. These rods are solely designed to bait and mark the area where you are fishing respectively and are not counted as one of your allocation of rods per licence.
Buying a Licence
Now you have a better understanding of the types of licence available and hopefully, the exact licence you require, you need to actually buy one.
Rod licences can be purchased in the following ways
- Online - https://get-fishing-licence.service.gov.uk/buy
- At the Post Office - if the licence is for someone over the age of 16
- By Telephone - call the Environment Agency on 0344 800 5386
If you are wanting to purchase the Junior licence for someone who is aged 13 - 16 this has to be done online.
A rod licence is available for the following periods with the 12-month option being better value for money.
Discounts are also available for over 65's when purchasing a 12-month licence.
|Licence Type||Trout and coarse 2-rod||Trout and coarse 3-rod||Salmon and sea trout|
|12-month over 65 or disabled||£20||£30||£54|
|12-month junior (13 to 16)||Free||Free||Free|
Now you know how to get your licence sorted, its just a matter of getting out onto the bank, catch lots of fish and have a great time.