Water quality at designated bathing water sites in Wales is assessed by Natural Resources Wales. From May to September, weekly assessments measure current water quality, and at a number of sites daily pollution risk forecasts are issued. Annual ratings classify each site as excellent, good, sufficient or poor based on measurements taken over a four year period.
In 2014, all of the bathing waters in Wales were compliant under the Bathing Water Directive. This is the best overall result in the UK environment.data.gov.uk
Wales has seen an increase in the number of international Blue Flag Awards7 with 41 beaches and one marina in Wales being awarded a Blue Flag Award - eight more than last year. A further 30 beaches successfully obtained the Green Coast Award and 102 beaches across Wales gained a Seaside Award for their good water quality and facilities.
Quieter beaches in Wales were also recognised with the Green Coast Award .Winners of this award are generally the less popular beaches, often in more scenic locations that qualify with the highest standard of water quality but are better known for their natural, unspoiled environment.
The Seaside Award celebrates beaches that have good public facilities, water quality, safety and management. In Wales these awards are managed by environmental charity Keep Wales Tidy
7 The blue flag award is issued by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), which rates beaches on categories including safety, facilities, and environmental management, as well as water quality and runs in 48 countries around the world.