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Blue Flag flying at Lowestoft

PUBLISHED: 01:01 07 May 2009 | UPDATED: 09:21 06 July 2010

TWO beaches in Waveney will be flying the prestigious Blue Flag this year - an internationally recognised symbol of a clean and well-managed beach - although another favourite coastal location has lost the accolade.

TWO beaches in Waveney will be flying the prestigious Blue Flag this year - an internationally recognised symbol of a clean and well-managed beach - although another favourite coastal location has lost the accolade.

In addition, another four beaches in north Suffolk have been given Quality Coast Awards, bringing the number of award-winning beaches in the district to six!

Beaches at Lowestoft North and South of Claremont Pier have been awarded, Blue Flags for the 2009 season. The Blue Flag Campaign is an initiative to recognise beaches that promote coastal environmental care.

ENCAMS European Blue Flag Awards recognise beaches throughout Europe, which fulfil strict criteria relating to both the water quality and the surrounding beach area. For a beach to be considered, it must have attained the guideline standard of the Bathing Water Directive before being assessed for various other criteria.

The beach must also demonstrate that it provides and manages a range of facilities and contributes to public awareness of environmental issues

Meanwhile, the beach at Southwold Pier has been awarded a Quality Coast Award for the 2009 season, narrowly missing out on attaining Blue Flag status, which has been attributed to poor weather during last summer and the marginal effect this has on overall water quality.

Waveney has also had further success as three other beaches have won Quality Coast Awards. Southwold beach (North of the Pier), Southwold Denes and Kessingland have all been awarded flags for the 2009 season. The Quality Coast Award was launched in 2007 and recognises the diversity and quality of England's coastline. All beaches achieving this award have one thing in common - they have been recognised for providing the very best standards for their visitors.

Waveney District Council's Asa Morrison, Principal Service Manager for Culture, Tourism & Sport said: “Our beaches are a wonderful asset and accolades such as the Blue Flag and Quality Coast Awards are the icing on the cake.

“We are delighted that Lowestoft will once again be flying the Blue Flag and while the poor weather last year prevented Southwold from reaching the required standard, the 'Quality Coast' award proves that, overall, it remains one of the country's premier resorts and a genuine jewel in the east.”

The Sunrise Coast Visitor Survey 2008 identified that over 75pc of visitors to the area went to or intended to visit Waveney's beaches during their stay, highlighting their importance to the District's £235.2 million tourism economy.

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