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Thames Flotilla Clash: Sir Bob Geldof and Nigel Farage Over Fishing

15th June 2016
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BREXIT: The Thames has been the scene of the most colourful and unusual exchanges of the referendum campaign so far. Note the larger trawlers occupying where RMS St. Helena recently moored next to HMS Belfast in the Pool of London BREXIT: The Thames has been the scene of the most colourful and unusual exchanges of the referendum campaign so far. Note the larger trawlers occupying where RMS St. Helena recently moored next to HMS Belfast in the Pool of London Photo: Getty Images

#GeldofThamesClash - Sir Bob Geldof and Nigel Farage reports the BBC News have traded insults in a nautical battle on the Thames over the EU referendum.

Mr Farage led a flotilla of fishing boats up the Thames (trawlers occupying RMS St. Helena's recent historic Pool of London mooring off HMS Belfast) to urge Parliament take back control of British waters.

But his Brexit armada was greeted by a rival Remain fleet carrying Sir Bob.The rock star yelled that the UKIP leader was "no fisherman's friend".

Mr Farage accused Sir Bob of "mocking" impoverished fishermen. Reality Check: How would Brexit affect fishing?

Follow the latest news on the BBC's referendum live page

The UKIP leader's flotilla, organised by Fishing for Leave, left the Kent port of Ramsgate early on Friday and reached Westminster during Prime Minister's Questions at 12:30 BST.

A handful of dinghies and other vessels bearing In flags sought to "intercept" the Leave flotilla as it passed under Tower Bridge, with the vessel carrying former pop star Sir Bob playing the song "The In Crowd" over loud speakers.

There were reports of brief, light-hearted skirmishes, including the exchange of hose fire and a police launch got involved to keep them apart on the Thames outside Parliament while Prime Minister's Questions took place inside.

Addressing Mr Farage over a PA system as his boat, the Sarpedon, pulled alongside the boat carrying the UKIP leader, Mr Geldof called Mr Farage a "fraud".
"Here are the facts about fishing. One, Britain makes more money than any other country in Europe from fishing. Two, Britain has the second largest quota for fish in Europe after Denmark. Three, Britain has the third largest landings. Four, you are no fisherman's friend.

"You were on the European Parliament Fishing Committee and you attended one out of 43 meetings."

For much more on the clash of personalities on old father Thames, click here.

Published in News Update
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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