FOUR beaches in Tendring have been handed prestigious Blue Flags this summer.

Environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy has today announced the winners of the prestigious Blue Flag and Seaside Awards for 2023.

Blue Flags have been presented to just 14 beaches in the East, including Dovercourt Bay, Brightlingsea, Frinton and Walton’s Albion Beach.

Frinton last held a Blue Flag in 2016, while Walton’s Albion Beach had previously held a Blue Flag award but was not entered by Tendring Council last year as coastal works were anticipated to lead to a temporary drop in water quality.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Blue Flag 2023 - WaltonBlue Flag 2023 - Walton (Image: TDC)

Lee Heley, TDC Corporate Director for Place and Economy, said the awards recognised the quality of seafronts around the district as well as their beauty.

“The Essex Sunshine Coast is wonderful place to enjoy, whether you live locally or travel in to visit,” Mr Heley said.

“In recognition of the importance of our coastline to the local economy, particularly tourism, we invest a lot of time, effort and money into our seafronts – and it is fantastic to have this work recognised with Blue Flag and Seaside Awards in this way.

“Having the prestigious Blue Flags and Seaside Awards make for an excellent advert for the Essex Sunshine Coast, and we hope will attract more visitors to Tendring.”

Keep Britain Tidy’s chief executive, Allison Ogden-Newton, added: “Visitors to a beach flying a Blue Flag or Seaside Award can be assured the beach will be clean, safe and meet the highest environmental standards, as well as international bathing water quality standards.

“The Blue Flag is the world’s most recognised award for beaches and marinas and, in order to qualify, each applicant must meet and maintain a series of stringent environmental, educational, safety and accessibility criteria.

“We’d therefore like to recognise and applaud all those who have worked so hard to protect and improve some of our best-loved and most popular.

“The collective efforts of beach managers, volunteers, residents and businesses all contribute to the success of these sites in achieving the incredibly high standards demanded.” A total of 23 beaches in the region were awarded the Seaside Award, including Brightlingsea, Dovercourt Bay, Clacton’s Martello Bay, Frinton, Walton’s Albion beach.

Blue Flag is an international award managed by Keep Britain Tidy on behalf of the Foundation for Environmental Education.

It is only presented to well-managed beaches with excellent water quality and environmental education programmes, while Seaside Awards are presented to the best beaches in England and celebrate the quality and diversity of the coastline.

Among the criteria beaches are assessed against are safety and services, such as first aid, lifeguards where necessary, environmental information including displaying details about local ecosystems, water quality and environmental management, including litter and waste.

Blue Flag beaches must meet the ‘excellent’ water quality standard as set out in the EU bathing water directive and Seaside Award winners must meet the 'sufficient’ standard.

  • In the East, Blue flags were also awarded to Felixstowe South and Pier, Southwold, Cromer, Sheringham, West Runton, East Beach Shoeburyness, Shoebury Common, Thorpe Bay, Three Shells Beach, Westcliff Bay.