Excellent status for Blackpool bathing waters
Sea water quality at Blackpool’s most northern beach, Bispham beach, has been classed as being ‘excellent’, in results released this morning by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).
In addition to this top classification for Bispham beach, high standards of bathing water quality have also been recorded by Defra at the resort’s three other beaches, Blackpool North, Central and South with each one classified as ‘good’.
The tough cleanliness standards are based on World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines.
Today’s classifications are the result of a remarkable turnaround for the resort’s beaches in the last few years, where heavy investment coupled alongside work with businesses, communities and public sector partners has contributed to making sure the town has a coastline to be proud of.
Since 2011 the Fylde Peninsula Water Management Partnership, made up of public and private sector companies, has worked to increase investment in the area’s sewer network, as well as creating teams of volunteers and businesses to look after the quality of the Fylde Coast’s seas.
At the same time, the Turning Tides partnership in the North West is creating bathing waters that the region can be proud of by working with key local authorities across the region, along with environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, United Utilities, Environment Agency and the National Farmers Union.
Since its inception in 2012, the partnership has helped reduce the impact of pollution in our sea water from inland, coastal and river sources, protecting bathing water quality and helping to sustain seaside economies.
John Blackledge, Blackpool Council’s Director of Communities and Environmental Services, said: “It is fantastic news that the water quality at Bispham beach has been classified as ‘excellent’ and that bathing waters at our three other beaches are also of a high standard.
“The overall improvement in our sea water over the last few years has been significant. Not only is that good for the town’s local economy but also has big health and environmental benefits too.
“The turnaround in our fortunes hasn’t happened by chance but by close working with our partners, heavy investment from United Utilities and excellent work from local businesses and communities.
“Thank you also to everybody who took part in beach clean ups throughout the year which has also helped to improve our water quality along with things such as not putting the wrong thing down the toilet, it all makes a difference.”
The directive is based on up to four years’ worth of samples, taken by the Environment Agency, with bathing waters classified as excellent, good, sufficient or poor.
Beach-goers can check water quality advice on the Environment Agency’s Bathing Water Data website.
To find out more about the work being taken across the North West to improve sea water quality, visit www.lovemybeach.org.