A new £500 permit charge for fisherman comes into force when cockle beds at the Ribble Estuary re-open in October 2012.

Some cockle beds were closed in November last year after 26 rescues took place for ill-equipped and unlicensed boats.  

Cockling resumes for eight days after the success of re-opening the beds in August under tighter regulations.

Under the regulations, cockles must be landed atPrestonmarina, all boats must have safety equipment and all boat skippers are required to have the necessary qualifications to operate a boat in darkness.

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