The Marine Bill, which will introduce a coastal access path in England, will be brought before Parliament for its consideration in the next year, Gordon Brown has announced.

In his draft Queen’s Speech on 14 May, Mr Brown set out his proposals for the next Parliamentary session published in the Government’s green paper, which includes the controversial Marine Bill.

The Bill is one of 18 pieces of legislation included in the government’s Draft Legislative Programme 2008-09.

The Marine Bill, which itself was published in draft form last month, would introduce a network of marine reserves around England’s coast, simplify licensing of offshore wind farms and establish public access to coastal land.

However, wildfowlers and conservationists are concerned the Bill will damage wildlife habitat.

Simon Breasley, of Thyme Consultants, explained the developments to Shooting Times: “The draft Bill is currently out to consultation with a deadline of 26 June, so I would urge coastal landowners and land managers such as wildfowling clubs to respond expressing any concerns at this stage. Coastal access proposals within the draft Bill appear to require further thought and there are a number of inconsistencies, particularly with regard to the duty of care and responsibility for the safety of the public.

For more information, including how to put forward your views, see www.CommonsLeader.gov.uk/draftprogramme