This content is exclusively provided by FAO / FAOLEX

Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 (Cap. 23).

Type of law

The Act introduces a new system of marine management. The Act includes provision changing the system for licensing the carrying on of activities in the marine environment. It also provides for the designation of conservation zones. It changes the way marine fisheries are managed at a national and a local level and modifies the way licensing, conservation and fisheries rules are enforced. It allows for designation of an Exclusive Economic Zone for the UK, and for the creation of a Welsh Zone in the sea adjacent to Wales. The Act also amends the system for managing migratory and freshwater fish, and enables recreational access to the English and Welsh coast.
The Act establishes the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) which is charged with marine functions on behalf of UK Government. The Act defines the UK marine area, used by subsequent Parts of the Act to describe areas where activities take place. It also allows an Exclusive Economic Zone to be designated (see paragraph 34) and creates the Welsh zone, the boundaries of which are to be set by an order made by the Secretary of State or an Order in Council made by Her Majesty. Functions relating to fisheries will be transferred to the Welsh Ministers in relation to the Welsh zone. Other provisions in the Act make provision for certain other functions to be conferred on the Welsh Ministers in relation to the Welsh zone
The Act further, among other things, a new system of marine planning and a new system of marine licensing and provides, across most of UK waters, for the designation of new Marine Conservation Zones.
Long title of text
An Act to make provision in relation to marine functions and activities; to make provision about migratory and freshwater fish; to make provision for and in connection with the establishment of an English coastal walking route and of rights of access to land near the English coast; to enable the making of Assembly Measures in relation to Welsh coastal routes for recreational journeys and rights of access to land near the Welsh coast; to make further provision in relation to Natural England and the Countryside Council for Wales; to make provision in relation to works which are detrimental to navigation; to amend the Harbours Act 1964; and for connected purposes.
Date of text
This Act also amends, amongst others, the Prevention of Oil Pollution Act 1971, the Government of Wales Act 2006, the Salmon Act 1986, the Merchant Shipping Act 1988 and the Food and Environment Protection Act 1985 and repeals the Sea Fisheries Regulation Act 1966.Version of the Act up to date with all changes known to be in force on or before 15 February 2019.
Source language


Legislation Amendment
Implemented by