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Last Updated: Wednesday, 3 December, 2003, 06:33 GMT
Permits to regulate cockling
Cockle beds on the coast of Lancashire have been re-opened - but cocklers will now need a permit to fish there.

A limited number - 200 - have been issued in an attempt to prevent overfishing.

It is hoped the system will also help to reduce other environmental problems caused previously by the fishing in the Warton Sands area.

However, residents and local MP Geraldine Smith believe the re-introduction of the fishing will cause disruption in the area.

It is the first time the North Wales and North West Sea Fisheries Committee has introduced the permits in the area.

Applicants for them have had to provide proof of identity, recent photographs and National Insurance numbers.

However, some residents living nearby have complained about the decision, which they said has led to increased noise levels and other disruption in the area.

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