It's official - our beaches are best in UK

North Devon Gazette

Defra has announced updated bathing water results and these show, for the first time, 100% of the classified bathing waters in the South West have passed their stringent standards, with 98% rated as or ‘Good’ or ‘Excellent’, compared to just 28% in 1991.Â

There has been significant investment in infrastructure and partnership work, which has delivered some of the best bathing waters in Europe. Â

South West Water’s ‘Clean Sweep’ project resolved the legacy practice of discharging untreated raw sewage into the sea by creating new infrastructure across the region. This, alongside sustained partnership work and continued investment, has significantly improved bathing waters.Â

Susan Davy, Chief Executive Officer for Pennon, which owns South West Water, said: “This announcement is a milestone moment as our region’s beaches proudly take their place amongst the best in Europe. Â

“This is as a result of significant, targeted investment and decades of partnership work, meaning residents and millions of visitors each year can safely enjoy the bathing spots right across our 860 miles of beautiful coastline.Â

“This is the first time under the latest standards that we have had 100% bathing water quality, and we intend to keep it this way. However, I recognise that we must build on and maintain the progress we have delivered on bathing water quality, alongside tackling our impact on river water quality.” Â

With around ten million tourists visiting the South West each year, delivering safe and clean bathing waters is extremely important to the region’s economy.Â

Malcolm Bell, CEO Visit Cornwall and Chair of the BeachWise Forum for the South West Region, said; “The far South West is renowned for its amazing coast line and beaches and they are the major draw for visitors to this wonderful region and that is why it is great news to see the best results ever for 2021, with 100% of bathing waters passing these high standards.”Â

North Devon BeachesÂ
Hartland Quay – ExcellentÂ
Westward Ho! – ExcellentÂ
Saunton Sands – ExcellentÂ
Croyde Bay – GoodÂ
Putsborough – ExcellentÂ
Woolacombe Village – ExcellentÂ
Combesgate Beach, Woolacombe – ExcellentÂ
Ilfracombe Tunnels Beach – ExcellentÂ
Ilfracombe Hele – ExcellentÂ
Lynmouth – ExcellentÂ