A young fisherman is back on the water following a successful crowdfunding campaign to replace his previous punt, which was found destroyed after going missing.

Pieces of 12-year-old Antony Newcombe’s vessel Ocean Harvester NPV 1162 were found washed up on Parlour Beach in Devon earlier this year after the punt took to sea by itself.

The subsequent crowdfunding campaign quickly reached its target of £2,500, enabling Antony to replace his lost vessel.

His new punt, Ocean Harvester 1, was officially blessed at a ceremony in Cawsand in South East Cornwall on 5 June.

Antony, who operates his own catch and sell venture out of the bay, told Fishing News that it ‘felt good’ to be back on the water. “It’s a nice boat to row. It’s a little bit bigger than my old one. It does catch the wind a bit more, so rowing into the wind is a bit harder, but it’s still good.”

The well-attended blessing ceremony, led by Rev Jo Northey, was featured on the regional BBC news programme Spotlight.

“The ceremony was good fun,” Antony told FN. “It was a bit daunting when I had two microphones on me, but it was a good experience.”

Antony expressed his thanks to everyone who donated to the crowdfunder, along with those who helped him get back on the water, including the Cornish FPO, Admiral Trailers, Wildway Boats, Solent Engineering, East Coast Fibreglass, Andy Miller, the Young Fishermen’s Network and Comfish Marine.

This story was taken from the latest issue of Fishing News. For more up-to-date and in-depth reports on the UK and Irish commercial fishing sector, subscribe to Fishing News here or buy the latest single issue for just £3.30 here

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