Southend-on-Sea has been commended for the quality and management of its beaches after five beaches were awarded the Blue Flag and all eight beaches were given a Seaside Award.
One third of beaches in the east of England which have been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag Award are located in Southend, with five of the 15 awards coming to Southend beaches.
East Beach, Shoebury Common Beach, Thorpe Bay Beach, Three Shells Beach and Westcliff Beach have all retained their Blue Flag this summer, matching the previous year’s record of five award winning beaches.
The Blue Flag awards, managed by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, is an international award for well-managed beaches with excellent water quality.
In addition, all Southend beaches have been presented with a Seaside Award by Keep Britain Tidy. The Seaside Award recognises beaches that are well-managed and maintained. This means that of the 20 Seaside Awards awarded in the east of England, almost half belong to Southend.
Cllr Kevin Robinson, cabinet member for business, culture and tourism, said “Both awards are the quality marks for our beaches and mean those visiting them can be sure that they are clean and safe and meet the highest environmental standards.
“Southend-on-Sea welcomes over 7 million visitors per year, and with Blue Flag and Seaside Awards flying above our beaches, residents and visitors will know that they are the best in the country. Being a seaside town, we hope following Coronavirus that this helps set us apart as a perfect staycation destination and are hopeful that this will be a bumper summer season to really boost the local economy.
“We want everyone to enjoy our beaches and help keep them award winning. We are all aware of the damage our waste causes to marine life and so we can all personally make a difference by disposing of rubbish responsibly when visiting the seaside or taking it home if any bins are full.”