Tyne and  Wear wows!

Tourists are being urged not to overlook Britain’s North Eastern beaches when choosing their summer holiday this year. The call comes as five beaches in the region were awarded Blue Flags by environmental charity Encams, for clean sands, pollution-free water, health and safety provision and disabled access. Roker, Seaburn, Longsands South, King Edward’s Bay and Whitley Bay, all in Tyne and Wear, were among Britain’s list of cleanest beaches.

Encams said that, by visiting Blue Flag beaches, holidaymakers will not only be helping to further the renaissance of the coastline, but will be defending jobs. The charity said that the state of the country’s beaches had improved dramatically since Britain entered the awards scheme in 1987. Back then, just a dozen passed the tests on water quality, facilities and beach cleanliness required to fly the Blue Flag.

Tom Wright, chief executive of national tourism agency VisitBritain, said: “It’s easy to forget that the British Isles are surrounded by miles of award-winning coastline.”