We have spoken with the head of Marine Scotland Science, Marine Scotland Licensing Dept., Fishery Adviser to Scottish Ministers and the Main Contractor over the issues with the work on the Queen’s Viaduct on the River Irvine and how this situation came about. It is accepted that that the fishery interests should have been included in direct consultation in advance of the work being approved and commencing to allow us (Trust, RIAIA, Clubs and anglers) time to raise any concerns we had. This didn’t happen in this case but I am assured that steps have been taken to ensure this situation will not arise again in future.
Putting aside the failures in the consultation process, we must quickly move towards finding acceptable solutions to allow the migratory species access to the river at all times. To this end, I will be meeting the Main contractor’s Project and Site Managers and the sub contractor’s agent on site on Monday. Once we have had a full explanation of the planned works, we will attempt to agree on measures to improve the situation and mitigate delays and impacts on migratory species. As long as agreements can be reached between the main and sub contractors and ourselves, I am hopeful that a quick solution will be implemented. This may not be the same solution as everyone would ideally prefer but that opportunity was lost through lack of consultation prior to the job commencing. The work is essential and must continue. This will be making the best out of the current situation. The main contractor recognises our genuine concerns and is eager to do whatever they can to make this possible.
I will post an update following the meeting to inform readers of what’s going to happen and when. I’d ask that anglers and clubs bear with us while we attempt to resolve this in a satisfactory way. We are in direct communication with the RIAIA and have agreed to meet with themselves and Clubs later next week once we know how things are progressing.