Nearly 90% of bathing waters in East of England rated as ‘Good or ‘Excellent’ against tough new standards
Anglian Water commits a £350,000 investment for this year to keep bathing waters clean
With the warm weather finally here and summer holidays just around the corner, Anglian Water is encouraging customers to head to the coast to take advantage of the region’s superb beaches and bathing waters as the season starts today.
Of the 49 bathing waters across the East of England, 31 are rated as ‘Excellent’ against European water quality standards with a further 12 achieving a ‘Good’ rating. The results mean some of England’s best beaches are now in this region.
Kicking off the start of the season is the annual Blue Flag and Seaside Award ceremony, being held at Cromer Pier on Thursday (17 May), organised by Keep Britain Tidy. These awards recognise Britain’s best loved beaches according to a number of criteria, including water quality, safety and nearby amenities. In 2017, 16 Blue flags were awarded to the beaches in the East of England.
Anglian Water will invest a further £350,000 this year to protect and maintain the excellent standards of the region’s coastal waters and beaches which tourism economies and businesses rely on. The money will also be used to help extend Anglian Water’s BeachCare and RiverCare initiatives to cover more miles of coastline and rivers than ever before to help keep beaches and bathing waters free of litter.
This year the water company’s BeachCare programme has teamed up with the charity ‘2 minute beach clean’ to install six ‘2 minute beach clean’ boards. The boards will be put on the shorefront at designated beaches and contain a litter picker as well as rubbish bags to help visitors undertake their own mini beach cleans. Some of the boards are already in situ up and down the East Anglian coastline, however new boards will be installed this year in Sutton, Winterton, Southend Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Felixstowe.
Dr Lucinda Gilfoyle, who leads Anglian Water’s coastal strategy said: “We’re delighted that so many of our bathing waters in our region are now rated ‘Excellent’ or ‘Good’, especially as the results are judged on the tougher new European bathing water quality standards. And we want to keep them that way, which is why were working with local communities via BeachCare, but also by installing the 2 minute beach clean boards, so everyone can do their bit, at any time.”
“Two minutes out of your day might not seem very much, but every piece of plastic and litter removed from the marine environment is no longer a danger to marine life and the quality of the water.
“Everyone has their part to play when it comes to protecting our bathing waters. We’ll be continuing to invest in on our coastal infrastructure, state-of-the-art bathing water monitoring systems and our successful coastal initiatives to do our bit. We also have a dedicated Coastal Water Protection Team who work with local communities, to continue the improvements we’ve made so far and tackle pollution from third party sources such as slurry from farms, trade waste, private sewage systems and misconnected drains.
What customers/visitors can do:
- take part in a 2 minute beach clean
- always pick up litter
- clean up after your dog
- don’t leave food for sea birds to eat
- if you live in a coastal town, use an approved WaterSafe plumber to check you drains are connected correctly.