Fylde coast team nets Canadian success with revolutionary lobster pots
A Fylde coast firm has landed an international deal in its bid to revolutionise the world of lobster fishing.
Bob Norburn and Steve Simpkin are re-thinking the traditional wood lobster pots used to catch the crustaceans, making the traps more environmentally friendly and safer for fishermen.
They have come up with a new all-stainless steel design to help reduce the amount of plastic going into the oceans.
The Better Lobster Trap design is Toblerone-shaped to make them easier to stack on fishing boats and to ensure they always land the right way up on the sea bed.
And now they have secured a patent for the design and signed a contract with a firm in Canada.
Former aerospace engineer Bob came up with the initial idea after seeing boats stacked dangerously high with bell-shaped pots weighed down with concrete while working near the fishing port of Halifax, Canada.
He created prototypes in his shed and tested them with the help of Sea Life Blackpool.
Steve said: “We have come on leaps and bounds since then with an all stainless steel design which does not need to be plastic coated.
“That plastic would just break down over time in the sea and add to the plastic pollution problem.
“We have got the Canada patent now and a company there is going to manufacture 40,000 units.
“Ashored Innovations works closely with the department of fisheries and is very keen on tackling environmental issues such as leaving fishing gear in the seas.
“Our pots stack better and are not as heavy as traditional ones so are not only safer they save the fishermen’s fuel costs too, which also helps the environment.”