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Bathing Beaches

Volume 176: debated on Wednesday 18 July 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list all bathing beaches nominated by each of the river purification boards and the number and location of those which were subsequently approved as designated beaches by his Department.

The full list of bathing waters nominated by the river purification boards in 1985 is as follows:

Highland RPB

  • Nairn
  • Dornoch South
  • Little Sand (Gairloch)
  • Embo
  • Burghead Bay
  • Gairloch
  • Gruinard South
  • Thurso
  • Dunnet Bay/Murkle Bay, Thurso
  • Trinkie South Head, Wick
  • Sinclair's Bay, Wick
  • Brora
  • Fortrose/Rosemarkie
  • Morar/Traigh, Mallaig
  • Back of Keppock/Bunacaimb, Arisaig
  • Sango Bay/Balnakeil Bay, Durness
  • Sangobeg, Durness
  • Mellon Udrigle, Gruinard Bay
  • Achnahaird Bay, Achiltibuie
  • Clachtoll/Stoer, Lochinver
  • Achmelvich, Lochinver
  • Glenbrittle, Skye
  • Farr Bay/Torrisdale Bay, Bettyhill
  • Coldbackie, Tongue Bay
  • Freswick Bay, John o'Groats
  • Golspie
  • Scourie
  • Applecross
  • Sand/Laide, Gruinard Bay
  • Sandside Bay, Reay
  • Loth, Crackaig, East Sutherland
  • Portmahomack
  • Melvich, Sutherland
  • Talmine, Sutherland
  • Hopeman
  • Drumbeg, Lochinver
  • Clashnessie Bay, Lochinver
  • Strathy Bay
  • Mellangaun, Loch Ewe
  • Sanna Bay, Ardnamurchan
  • Sheigra, Kinlochbervie
  • Invernaver, North Sutherland
  • Armadale Bay, North Sutherland
  • Balintore/Shandwick
  • Cromarty
  • Ullapool

North East RPB

  • Lossiemouth West and East
  • Strathlene, Buckie
  • Findochty
  • Cullen
  • Fraserburgh
  • Banff Links
  • Sandend
  • Cruden Bay
  • Ugie Mouth and Craigewan Sands, Peterhead
  • Sandyends, Banff
  • New Aberdour
  • Lido, Peterhead
  • Balmedie
  • Newburgh Sands
  • Aberdeen Beach
  • St. Cyrus


  • St. Andrews, East and West
  • Arbroath
  • Carnoustie
  • Montrose
  • Monifieth
  • Broughty Ferry
  • Kinshaldy (Tentsmuir)
  • Cambo (Kingsbarns)
  • Lunan Bay
  • Balcomie Links (Crail)
  • St. Cyrus

Forth RPB

  • Gosford Sands
  • Kinghorn (Pettycur)
  • Gullane Bay
  • Aberdour (Silver sands)
  • North Berwick
  • Elie/Earisferry
  • Yellowcraigs
  • Crail (Roome Bay)
  • Portobello
  • Whitesands Bay
  • Largo Bay

Tweed RPB

  • Pease Bay
  • St. Abbs/Coldingham
  • Eyemouth

Solway RBP

  • Sandyhills
  • Mossyard and Cardoness
  • Brighouse Bay
  • Carrick and Sandgreen
  • Killantringan Bay
  • Ardwell Bay
  • Port Logan Bay
  • Monrieth Bay
  • Luce Bay Sands
  • Southerness

Clyde RPB

  • Ayr (South,
  • Prestwick
  • Largs (North)
  • Troon (South)
  • Maidens
  • Barassie
  • Troon (North)
  • Irvine/Gailes
  • Girvan
  • Lunderston Bay
  • Largs (South)
  • Croy
  • Saltcoats
  • Milport
  • Helensburgh
  • Doonfoot
  • Rothesay
  • Stevenston
  • Butlins (Ayr)
  • Brodick
  • Ganavan (Oban)
  • Seamill—West Kilbride
  • Fairlie
  • Machrihanish
  • Dunure
  • Portenvoss
  • Turnberry

The list of waters which were subsequently identified for the purposes of the bathing waters directive is as follows:

  • Nairn (East Bench)
  • Cullen
  • Fraserburgh
  • Aberdeen
  • Montrose
  • Arbroath
  • Carnoustie
  • St. Andrews (West Sands)
  • Kinghorn (Pettycur)
  • Aberdour (Silversands)
  • Gullane
  • Yellowcraigs
  • North Berwick (Milsey Bay)
  • Dunbar (Belhaven Bay)
  • Pease Bay
  • Sandyhills
  • Girvan
  • Turnberry
  • Ayr (South Beach)
  • Prestwick
  • Troon (South Beach)
  • Irvine/Gailes (New Town)
  • Saltcoats/Ardrossan (South Beach)

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps he is taking to ensure that non-designated bathing beaches are monitored regularly and conform to the coliform bacteria standards of the European Community bathing water directive applied to designated bathing beaches.

My right hon. and learned Friend is responsible for implementation of the bathing waters directive in Scotland (76/160/EEC) and therefore for ensuring that Scottish waters identified in terms of the directive are monitored regularly. Monitoring of non-identified waters is carried out by the river purification authorities as part of their statutory responsibilities to control aquatic pollution. Such monitoring is generally in line with that required by the directive for identified waters. Results of monitoring are published in the annual reports of the river purification boards, copies of which are in the Library.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list the number of designated bathing beaches in Scotland which met the recommended guideline standards as well as the minimum mandatory standards for coliform bacteria set by the European Community bathing water directive.

In 1989, Cullen and Pease bay met the guideline (G) and mandatory (I) quality requirements specified in the bathing waters directive (76/160/EEC) for total coliforms. Pease bay met the G and I quality requirements for faecal coliforms.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland when his Department informed the European Commission of the results of the monitoring carried out by river purification boards in 1989 which showed the number of bathing waters which conformed to the mandatory standards for coliform bacteria set by the European Community bathing water directive.

Scotland's bathing water monitoring results for 1989 were reported to the European Commission by the office of the United Kingdom permanent representative to the European Communities on 8 February 1990, along with the results for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) what criteria are applied in deciding which bathing beaches are designated; and if he will make a statement;(2) if he has any plans to extend the number of designated bathing beaches in Scotland; and if he will make a statement.

Responsibility for identifying Scottish bathing waters in terms of directive 76/160/EC lies with the Secretary of State for Scotland. The directive defines bathing waters as fresh or sea water where (a) bathing is explicitly authorised or (b) bathing is not prohibited, and is traditionally practised by a large number of bathers. The list of 23 bathing waters currently identified in Scotland was drawn up from nominations made by the river purification boards after consultation with district councils and was finalised following discussion with the European Commission.There are no plans at present to amend the current list. The position is, however, kept under review and any future amendments would be made by my right hon. and learned Friend taking account of, amongst others, the following objective criteria suggested for this purpose by the European Commission:

  • (1) facilities for access to the beach
  • (2) sanitary equipment
  • (3) facilities for changing
  • (4) parking space for cars
  • (5) lifeguards on the beach
  • (6) first aid service
  • (7) kiosks and shops (mobile shops)
  • (8) water sports facilities (boats, surfing, swimming lessons)