Seaside lovers in Mid and East Antrim can rejoice after all three of the area’s popular beaches were recognised for their clean water quality.
Despite the recent introduction of more stringent standards, Northern Ireland continues to have some of the best bathing water quality in Europe.
“All 23 beaches in Northern Ireland have been identified as having bathing waters that meet the highest EU standard, being classed as having ‘Excellent’ water quality,” said Mayor, Councillor Billy Ashe.
“We are delighted to know that three of these beaches are within Mid and East Antrim Borough at Carnlough, Ballygally and Browns Bay.
“It is very heartening to have such good results in spite of the wet summer we have just experienced in 2015.
“It is particularly pleasing that once again Carnlough has met the criteria following some problems last year – most likely caused by heavy rain.”
Every year the council applies for the Seaside Award and visitors will be familiar with the bright blue and yellow flag on display, showing that the beach has been successful in reaching the high standards.
However, while the water quality is a major component, litter continues to be a problem.
The Mayor said: “Litter on our beaches is an ongoing issue. The local communities at all three beaches have been wonderful in organising ‘beach cleans’ at various times throughout the summer.
“A litter-free beach is very important and we would ask everyone who enjoys our beaches to take their litter home or use the bins provided,” said Councillor Ashe, adding that if any other groups would like to take part in a local ‘clean-up’ they should contact council officials.