Removal of any substance or object

This guidance outlines the circumstances under which a marine licence may be required from the Marine Management Organisation.


A marine licence is required to remove any substance or object within English waters and Northern Ireland offshore waters, from the seabed when using a:

  • Vehicle
  • Vessel
  • Aircraft
  • Marine structure
  • Floating container

‘Vehicle’, ‘vessel’, ‘aircraft’, ‘marine structure’ and ‘floating container’ are defined in Section 115 of the MCAA 2009.

Diving activities

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) has produced some detailed guidance to help divers understand whether their specific activities will require a marine licence.

Abandoned, lost and discarded fishing gear (ALDFG)

The MMO has produced some supporting best practice guidance for divers who wish to remove abandoned, lost and discarded fishing gear (ALDFG) in a way that mitigates potential impacts on the environment.

Wrecks and salvage

The MMO has produced some guidance about the responsibilities and rights of wreck owners and salvors, and how to report wreck material. wreck and salvage law

Published 30 May 2019