NFFO president Tony Delahunty has been awarded the OBE in the New Year honours for his services to the fishing industry.

He was a working fisherman in an under-10m vessel from Selsey until November 2017, has had strong links to the RNLI since 1978, and is an MMO board member.

NFFO chief executive Barrie Deas said Tony had taken on ‘a prodigious amount of work’ during his career.

“This award is truly deserved, and I am delighted that his contribution has been recognised in this way. It is incredible to me that he has been able to do all that he has done, while maintaining a successful fishing business on the south coast. I know that Tony’s wife, Fiona, has also made a huge contribution to his work, and I think that this should be recognised as well in this award,” he said.

“Two main features have characterised his work: a quiet but steely determination to do the right thing in the right way; and an unshakable belief that all fishermen, whatever their size of vessel, method of fishing, or location on the coast, should have a voice in the way our industry is managed.

“The other things that have marked Tony’s work, is an unshakable conviction that fishermen and fisheries scientists should work closely together; and that fisheries policy should be grounded in solid evidence rather than emotion and hearsay.

“It is encouraging that this kind of approach, along with the hard work and commitment has now been recognised in this way.”

Tony Delahunty said while he was honoured to receive the award he felt ‘very strongly that the award recognises the importance and value of the work done by all my colleagues in the NFFO’.

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