North Tyneside beaches have again been named among the best in Europe.
Tynemouth Longsands, King Edwards Bay and Whitley Bay are among 68 beaches around the UK which have been awarded Blue Flag status today (Tuesday).
And the trio are joined by Cullercoats beach in being awarded a Seaside Award.
Just six beaches in the North East have been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag.
The awards are the quality marks for beaches and mean those visiting them can be sure that they are clean, safe and meet the highest environmental standards, as well as the tough international bathing water quality standards.
A new survey carried out for Keep Britain Tidy shows that nine out of ten people said cleanliness, safety and assured water quality were key factors in deciding which beach to visit and 93 per cent believe that it is important to preserve and protect our beaches.
Keep Britain Tidy’s chief executive Allison Ogden-Newton said: “It is great news for holiday-makers, overseas visitors and businesses that rely on coastal tourism that we have been able to award so many flags this year.
“The success of our beaches in reaching the very high standards demanded by both awards are a real testament to all those who have worked so hard to protect and improve our beaches – from beach managers to local people and businesses.
“When you enjoy a day on the beach flying a Blue Flag or Seaside Award, you know you are on one of the safest, cleanest and very best in the country.”
This year, the international Blue Flag Award Scheme marks its 30th anniversary.
In 1987 12 English beaches achieved their Blue Flag, in the 30 years since, this has soared to 68 beaches.