Six Anglesey beaches have retained their coveted Blue Flag status.
They’re among 47 sites across Wales to receive the prestigious status for the highest standard of water quality, safety and facilities by Keep Wales Tidy. The Blue Flag beaches on the island are Benllech, Church Bay (Porth Swtan), Llanddwyn, Llanddona, Trearddur Bay and Porth Dafarch.
Another three beaches at Beaumaris, Traeth Crigyll-Rhosneigr and Porth Eilian won Seaside Award status for their good water quality and facilities.
In Gwynedd, eight beaches have been awarded blue flags – Aberdaron, Barmouth, Abersoch, Criccieth (Traeth y Promenade), Dinas Dinlle, Morfa Bychan (Black Rock Sands), Pwllheli and Tywyn.
Anglesey Council said it welcomed the news, but added improvements were still needed in some areas – particularly around the north west coastline, where beaches were strewn with polystyrene in the aftermath of Storm Emma.
The council’s head of regulation, Dylan Williams, said: ”Retaining the awards is a huge achievement…we are continuing to work closely with waste contractors and volunteers to tackle the severe polystyrene pollution and are committed to ensure that all our beaches reach the highest possible standards.”
”We’re committed to ensuring that our beaches remain an integral part in our Island’s success as a popular tourist destination.”
Twelve beach wardens have been hired by the council to provide safety advice and information about the six Blue Flag beaches on the island over the summer.
Meanwhile, the Menai Bridge-based boat tour firm ‘RibRide’ retained its own Blue Flag status as a sustainable operator.
Councillor Carwyn Jones said: ”Boat skippers are knowledgeable about wildlife and local history and this is just as important to the company as providing a thrilling experience to all.”
He added: ”I’m delighted that our island has retained its six Blue Flag beaches. The Isle of Anglesey can rightly boast many of the best beaches in Wales and Britain. They are a real jewel in the Island’s crown and attract thousands of visitors every year.”
In the scheme’s 30th anniversary year, Seaside Awards were given to 83 Welsh beaches while a further nineteen beaches won the Green Coast Award for high environmental standards.
Keep Wales Tidy CEO Lesley Jones said: ”It is important to recognise the importance of the awards in attracting tourism to support the local economy, giving our communities a rightful sense of pride and promoting environmental awareness and protection.”
”Congratulations and a massive thank you to everyone involved in managing and caring for our coastline; ensuring that the Welsh coast continues to be a wonderful place for visitors and local people alike, and that our precious environment is protected and cherished.”