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Swimming at Ainsdale set to be outlawed

UKIP outrage at new EU rules to ban bathing at 50 beaches

Written by . Published on May 7th 2013.

Swimming at Ainsdale set to be outlawed

IF you do like to be beside the seaside - particularly up at Ainsdale or Blackpool on scorching days - leave the bathing costume at home. 

Sea bathing along a massive stretch of the Liverpool bay shore, right up to Cumbria faces being outlawed by unelected European bureaucrats.

New EU rules are set to ban a dip in the sea at more than 50 of England’s best known beaches, which risk being designated as unsafe for swimming. 


The Environment Agency has warned that the beaches, listed among 500 bathing sites around the country, are unlikely to meet new water cleanliness standards that come into force in 2015. 

But Liverpool-based UKIP Euro MP Paul Nuttall said it was more evidence of European health and safety gone mad, and would harm tourist industries of traditional seaside resorts. 

“People will be unable to go for a swim after 2015 because Draconian new standards for bathing water will come into force, he said.

Swimming Ban Uk Beaches
“We already have strict standards in this country but no, bureaucrats in Brussels have to interfere and in doing so put at risk an integral part of our tourist industry.” 

He added: “Everyone loves going to the beach on a sunny day and having a dip to cool off is all part of the fun. Health and safety rules have already taken fun out of many leisure activities and here we go again with interference in a traditional activity.” 

The revised European Bathing Water Directive will require water to be twice as clean to achieve the highest standard – a rating of Excellent and beaches that fail annual tests will fall foul. 

Mr Nuttall, who is also deputy leader of UKIP, added: “Twenty of those beaches are in my constituency and I am very concerned that unless water quality is improved in time, tourism, which plays a big role in the local economy, will be badly hit. 

“Our household water bills have soared in recent years to finance billions of pounds to treat and clean-up sewage released into rivers and the sea. Unfortunately last year’s wettest summer for 100 years led to an increase in bacteria and viruses ending up in bathing waters. 

Lancashire, Blackpool, Beach And Tower

“Such pollution can originate from farmland and urban run-off, storm waters, misconnected plumbing, septic tanks and dog faeces. As for the latter, well no one wants to encounter such mess on the beach and if dog owners cannot be responsible for their pets then more beaches will ban dogs altogether. 

“We do not need the EU telling us how to live our lives, though as we know they do so more and more, they make rules for the sake of it.  

“We are quite capable of devising our own standards. The revised European Bathing Water Directive will require water to be twice as clean as applies currently to achieve the highest standard.” 

Some tourism bosses have called for a more flexible approach to allow daily updates so that beaches would only have to close on days when pollution reached hazardous levels. 

But, said Mr Nuttall: “That is certainly a compromise but sadly we all know too well that the EU is not interested in compromise or re-negotiation.”

Tide of change - the North West's affected beaches

Ainsdale, Sefton, Merseyside

St Annes, Lytham Saint Annes, Lancashire

St Annes North, Lytham Saint Annes, Lancashire

Blackpool South, Lancashire

Blackpool Central, Lancashire

Blackpool North, Lancashire

Cleveleys, Lancashire

Fleetwood, Lancashire

Heysham Half Moon Bay, Lancashire

Morecambe South, Lancashire

Morecambe North, Lancashire

Biggar Bank, Walney Island, Barrow in Furness, Cumbria

Sandy Gap, Walney Island, Barrow in Furness, Cumbria

West Shore, Walney Island, Barrow in Furness, Cumbria

Roanhead, Cumbria

Askam-in-Furness, Cumbria

Haverigg, Cumbria

Seascale, Cumbria

Allonby, Cumbria

Silloth, Cumbria

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11 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousMay 7th 2013.

Isn't the Irish Sea supposed to be riddled with radiation as well.

AnonymousMay 7th 2013.

It's a bloody disgrace isn't it, all these Johnny foreigner types imposing all their clean water mumbo-jumbo and hygiene rules on us. People often say to me "Oh how I long for the days when the river was full of raw untreated shite and nothing at all lived in it" I might draw up a petition online demanding a return to the good old days, and a campaign to blacken the three graces while I'm at it. Are you with me everybody??

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousMay 8th 2013.

Bring back the Mersey goldfish!

TheoMay 9th 2013.

What finer sight on a summers day than a shoal of Garston Trout in the shallows

AnonymousMay 7th 2013.

The recent site upgrade really has gone rather well, what?

1 Response: Reply To This...
EditorialMay 8th 2013.

Nods ruefully

AnonymousMay 8th 2013.

When was the last time I swam in the sea in Blackpool? 1976. Would never go back to Blackpool now.

AnonymousMay 9th 2013.

"Cumbria faces"..was that pun intended? Cleveleys beach front is looking rather dapper now following its makeover and subsequent removal of the Riverdance - having said that, wasn't it that poor stricken vessel that boosted the tourism figures a zillion fold? I'll still go paddling no matter what

BillMay 9th 2013.

I am British and Proud and will continue to make my children swim in raw sewage if I wish. As Winston, no friend of Johnny Foreigner said,I will get dysentry on the beaches - I have nothing to offer the Hepatitis Unit but blood sweat and tears. Well said Nutall. We'll be All Nuts together!

AnonymousMay 9th 2013.

They seem to forget that for those of us who cannot afford to get a spray on fake tan, a quick dip in the water is the only way we can get a bronzie.

Andy MeliaMay 15th 2013.

After a childhood spent swimming in close proximity to 'Crosby Pier' (aka the sewer pipe) I am totally immune to all things nasty in the sea. Jellyfish excepted.

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