Borough’s beaches recommended for water quality following tests

Tynemouth Longsands, beach
Tynemouth Longsands, beach

All of North Tyneside’s bathing beaches have received top water quality recognition from the Marine Conservation Society (MCS).

Last year’s dry summer has resulted in more bathing beaches than ever being “recommended” for their excellent water quality in its annual Good Beach Guide.

Tynemouth Long Sands, Cullercoats Bay and Whitley Bay beach have all been praised, which it is hoped will help boost tourism in the borough.

MCS coastal pollution officer Rachel Wyatt said: “It’s great news that we are able to recommend more beaches than ever for excellent water quality and it shows just how good British beaches can be.

“The main challenge now is maintaining these standards, whatever the weather.

“Most people don’t realise what a big impact the weather can have on bathing water quality, but this has really been highlighted in the last few years.

“2008, 2009 and 2012 were, according to the Met Office, amongst the wettest summers on record since 1910, and fewer UK bathing waters met minimum and higher water quality standards because of increased pollution running off rural and urban areas and overloaded sewers.”

By the end of the 2015 bathing season, all designated bathing waters must meet the new minimum ‘sufficient’ standard under the revised EU bathing water directive.

Beaches which do not will have to display signs warning against bathing in the sea from the start of the season in 2016.

A North Tyneside Council spokesperson said: “With Long Sands named as one of the top ten beaches in the UK and now, along with Whitley Bay and King Edwards, to be listed in the Good Beach Guide, what a fantastic year 2014 is proving to be for our beaches.”