Consultation on the proposed Southern North Sea and Eastern Channel Mixed Flatfish Fisheries Management Plan (FMP)

Closed 1 Oct 2023

Opened 17 Jul 2023


The purpose of this consultation is to seek your views on the proposed Southern North Sea and Eastern Channel mixed Flatfish Fisheries Management Plan (FMP) and the policies and proposed measures it contains. We are also seeking your views on the likely environmental impacts of the FMP set out in the environmental report.  

The Flatfish FMP applies to lemon sole, witch, turbot, brill, dab, flounder, Atlantic halibut, plaice and sole in English waters within International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) areas 4b, 4c and 7d.   

The plan has been informed by the biological, social and economic evidence currently available for the flatfish stocks life history, stock assessment and fishing and management practices. The FMP lays out all the existing management and measures in place and sets out the principles for managing to Maximum Sustainable Yield for quota stocks, as well as some measures, short and long-term goals to manage the flatfish fishery holistically and sustainably.

Why your views matter

This consultation is the opportunity for you to help shape and influence the future of flatfish management policy in England and builds upon previous engagement with industry.     

The consultation survey has four parts:    

  1. Personal details and confidentiality (required)    

  1. Questions on the proposed Southern North Sea and Eastern Channel Mixed Flatfish FMP    

  1. Questions on the Southern North Sea and Eastern Channel Mixed Flatfish FMP environmental report    

  1. Consultee feedback on the Online Survey (required)    

You only need to respond to the questions that you wish to answer. There are a mixture of general and specific questions. However, all respondents must complete the required 'Consultee Feedback on the Online Survey' and ‘personal details and confidentiality’ sections before you are able to submit your response to the online survey. Defra welcomes any further information and evidence to support this work - you can supply that directly via 

You can find the FMP and associated documents in the ‘related documents’ section at the bottom of this page. Please pay particular attention to the consultation document which summarises the FMP, includes the consultation questions and provides context.  

What happens next

Defra will take time to review and analyse the responses to this consultation. These will then be published alongside the final FMP. 


  • Charities/Voluntary Organisations
  • Environmental campaigners
  • Food Industry
  • All Marine Users
  • Government Departments
  • Government Agencies
  • Devolved Administrations
  • Coastal Members of Parliament
  • Coastal local authorities
  • Recreation sector
  • Coastal Management sector
  • Ports and Harbour Authorities and Estuaries
  • IFCAs
  • Angling Organisations and Trade
  • Fishing Focus individual recipients
  • Environmental professional services
  • Consumer Groups
  • Commercial Fisheries Organisations
  • Fisheries Producer Organisations
  • Member of the General Public
  • Fishing Industry
  • Fishermen
  • Shellfish Cultivators
  • Fishing Industry


  • Natural environment
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