Meet our new Fylde LOVEmyBEACH Officer Emily! With Emma moving on to pastures new, Emily is very excited to join the team as she has grown up on the Fylde coast and has been a regular volunteer on our beach cleans for the last few years. She learnt to scuba dive in the beautiful waters of Thailand and has been completely in love with the ocean ever since! She was lucky ..
No matter whether you enjoy a swim, paddle or stroll along one of the region's beautiful beaches, you can rest assured that the North West has some of the cleanest bathing waters in the UK. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has published statistics that reveal that 97% of the North West’s bathing waters meet the government’s required standar..
LOVEmyBEACH is supporting the latest #binit4beaches campaign. We’re asking all dog owners who love to take their pooch for a walk on the beach, to pledge to always pick up their poo! It’s not the most glamorous job in the world but it has to be done. Just one gram of dog poo is enough to affect the quality of more than one million litres of seawater. Dog faeces contain l..
Is your house one of the 60,000 properties in the North West with a private sewage treatment system or septic tank? There are lots of (simple) ways you can help protect our rivers and seas in the spirit of Word Rivers Day! Water samples taken by the Environment Agency and the Rivers Trust highlight that certain waterways are failing the safe limits for faecal bacteria found..
This week, LOVEmyBEACH Campaign Manager, Stephanie Wyatt awarded Blackpool & Fylde College a ‘LOVEmyBEACH Hero’ award to recognise the work carried out by its Marine Biology students to improve bathing water quality in the area. Blackpool and The Fylde College’s Marine Biology students have been working on real life bathing water projects, in conju..
The Environment Agency monitors bathing waters – stretches of sea or lake where many people swim and paddle – to assess whether they meet the strict standards of the European Bathing Water Directive. The standards are set to protect public health and the environment from pollution.
The Environment Agency takes 20 water samples at each bathing water between May and September each year and post the information online: http://environment.data.gov.uk/bwq/profiles/
The samples are tested for certain types of bacteria: escherichia coli (E.coli) and intestinal enterococci, which are not directly harmful but indicate the presence of pollution. The bacteria are found in the intestines of animals and humans and pass through the body in poo. High levels of bacteria = poor water quality.
However, the water may be cleaner on the actual day you visit the beach, as the quality can change, particularly after heavy rain washes pollution into rivers and the sea. Look out for daily forecasts at some beaches.
Each beach is also given an annual classification. From 2015 this is based on sample results over the previous four years, e.g. 2015 results use data from 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. 2016 results use data from 2013 to 2016 and so on. The classifications are:
The standard is the highest, cleanest class
Generally good water quality
The water meets the minimum standards
Bathing is not advised at this beach as water quality has not met sufficient standards
If a bathing water is classed as Poor, you are advised not to bathe because samples taken over the previous four years have been affected by pollution. This does not mean the beach is closed – you can still enjoy everything the beach has to offer.
If a water sample has high levels of bacteria, analysis is done to estimate* the sources of pollution and work is planned in the area to improve water quality. When this work is significant and is expected to help improve bathing water quality, the four years of data for the annual classification starts from the time the work is completed and sample data from before the work are not included. This is called step change.
*Estimates are based on computer modelling, DNA analysis, and knowledge of the local area. The estimates can never be perfect because pollution to bathing waters changes from day to day depending on the season, the tides and the weather.