Good Beach Guide rates 97 per cent of the South West's beaches 'excellent'
South West Water has welcomed the results of the Marine Conservation Society's mid-season 'health check' of bathing waters in the UK, as published in its Good Beach Guide.
The report graded 140 of the South West's beaches as excellent during the first half of the bathing season in accordance with the European Guideline Standard - up by 32 from 2005. The remaining four beaches in the region gained a basic pass. This means that none of the beaches failed the European mandatory standard.
Chris Loughlin, chief executive South West Water, said: "South West Water works hard to achieve high standards in the quality of the region's bathing waters. These results are a testimony to the dedication and professionalism of our staff and our multi-million pound Clean Sweep programme, which has led to the closure of 220 crude sewage discharges and has helped to make the region's bathing waters, beaches and rivers some of the finest in the UK.
"Despite the report's positive results, the weather plays a major part in bathing water quality. The unsettled weather we have experienced in the second half of the bathing season presents its own challenges, where heavy downpours can cause agricultural pollution to be washed into rivers and beaches and can also lead to storm discharges from our system. As such, we will continue our work with the Environment Agency and local councils to minimise the impact of this on tourism."
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Notes to editors:
1. 99 beaches were recommended in 2004, and 108 in 2005.
2. The full results of the MCS Good Beach Guide are published on its website (see link right)
Published: 26 August 2006
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