Toxic fun on Britain's beaches

Posted on: 26 May 2011 by Alexander Hay

Because it's not a proper holiday without sewage or bitter complaints about sewage. Staycation, anyone?

'Where have my feet gone, Dad?' 'Shut up and enjoy the acid, son.' 'Oh.'As to be expected, this 'Ain't Britain Awful?' story comes from gloom peddlers par excellence The Daily Mail

. It seems many of our beaches are rather, err, unhealthy. Somewhat inevitably, Blackpool is at the top of the list for toxicity, while exotic Morecombe and Ayr surface in the top ten, much like what we keep dumping off our coasts:

Forty-six beaches have been labelled potential health hazards in a list of shame which includes some of Britain’s best-known seaside locations.

No-swimming signs may have to be erected under European rules unless they are cleaned up.
Sewage discharged into the sea is generating dangerous levels of bacteria and viruses, according to the Marine Conservation Society.

Note, however, the caveat that was somewhat downplayed 'lest it undid the shock horror headline:

The campaign group’s warning will alarm tourist chiefs in the areas identified – which represent 6 per cent of the 758 beaches surveyed – because it will drive families elsewhere. However, water quality around the coast is getting better generally.

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Alexander Hay

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