THERESA May has been accused of selling out Scottish fisherman in return for a Brexit trade deal.

In the Tory leader’s big speech to flesh out the details of the UK leaving the EU, she told Europe that she was willing to come to a “reciprocal deal on fishing access” after Brexit.

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“The UK will regain control over our domestic fisheries management rules and access to our waters,” May told the audience in the Mansion House in London.

She added: “ But as part of our economic partnership we will want to continue to work together to manage shared stocks in a sustainable way and to agree reciprocal access to waters and a fairer allocation of fishing opportunities for the UK fishing industry.

“And we will also want to ensure open markets for each other’s products.”

That caused fear among some who thought the Prime Minister might be selling out fishing communities as the price for securing access to the EU’s market of 500 million.

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SNP MSP Maree Todd tweeted: “Theresa May offering a cherry?

“Clear from the very start that the Tories would sell out fishing - again!” she added.

Ukip’s Mike Hookem said it was “now quite clear that the UK fishing industry is to be sold down the river post-Brexit.”

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He added: “For continuing to work together read continued dictation of fishing rules from Brussels. For continuing to manage shared stocks, read continued EU pillaging of fish stocks from UK waters, and for continued reciprocal access, read, continued domination of UK waters by EU fishing vessels.”

But Bertie Armstrong from the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation said he wasn’t worried, and welcomed that the Prime Minister had very carefully worded her comments ahead of talks with Brussels.

“While those negotiations will in the short term agree access to our waters for the fleet of the EU and others, what must not be traded away is any possible part of our sovereignty.”

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He said he didn’t think there was anything the speech that indicated that that was happening.

Some of Scotland’s highest pockets of leave voters in the fishing communities, with many in the trade long opposed to the UK’s membership of the EU, and the CFP.

The agreement sets the quotas for how much, and what type, of fish each EU nation is allowed to catch, and British fisherman, who are only allowed to catch less than 40 per cent of fish in UK coastal waters, have long felt they’ve had a raw deal.

Icelandic fishing boats land about 95 per cent of the fish in their water.

Norwegian fishermen keep more than 80 per cent of the fish in their waters.

Ross Thomson, the hard Brexit backing Tory MP for Aberdeen South was upbeat after May’s speech.

“Great news for fishing communities in the North East of Scotland as the PM is unequivocal that we are leaving the hated Common Fisheries Policy and taking back control of our waters. The SNP want Brussels to remain in charge and keep us in the CFP”

Earlier this week, Alain Cadec MEP, chair of the European Parliament Committee on Fisheries, told the BBC there needed to be an “equitable agreement”.

“I think that the British have a great interest in an equitable agreement, if they want to be able to sell their products in the single market of the EU.

“And equally, we can access the British waters.

“That’s how we need to reach an agreement. It can’t be unilateral, that’s not possible.”