Blackpool is celebrating today after Keep Britain Tidy named Blackpool South as the only Blue Flag beach in the North West.
The award recognises coastal destinations that boast the highest quality of water, facilities, safety, environmental education and management.
This year environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy is presenting 190 awards to England’s very best beaches, including 65 international Blue Flags and 125 Seaside Awards (eight more than last year), with 42 beaches achieving both awards.
On top of the Blue Flag at Blackpool South, Blackpool North beach opposite the Tower, Blackpool Central beach and Bispham beach have also been given Seaside Award status.
Cllr Gillian Campbell, Deputy Leader of Blackpool Council, said:
“ I am so proud that Blackpool South has achieved a Blue Flag for the third year running.
“Our entire coastline is award-winning which is great news for the millions of people that enjoy it every year.
“We wouldn’t have been able to achieve this without the support of local residents and businesses who have donated their time and energy to the LOVEmyBEACH campaign.
“We want to keep this Blue Flag next year and we can only do that with everyone helping us.”
The public LOVEmyBEACH campaign has helped to improve sea water quality, with messages around looking after the water reaching thousands of people across the North West, as well as hundreds of volunteers doing Fylde coast beach cleans and many local businesses signing up to be responsible companies.
Keep Britain Tidy’s Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton said:
“The success of the 148 beaches in reaching the very high standards demanded by both awards is testament to all those who have worked so hard to protect and improve our beaches – from beach managers and volunteers to local people and businesses.
“When you enjoy a trip to a beach flying an international Blue Flag or Seaside Award, you know you are on one of the safest, cleanest and very best in the country.”
The Environment Agency carries out water quality sampling throughout the bathing water season. All beach goers are encouraged to check bathing waters results at https://environment.data.gov.uk/bwq/profiles/ and follow advice on signs at the beach to help keep the water clean.
To find out more about the work being undertaken across the North West to improve bathing water quality, visit www.lovemybeach.org.