Seaside Award Criteria (England)


  • Information about the Seaside Award must be displayed at the beach. 
  • If applicable, information about bathing water quality must be displayed. 
  • A map of the beach indicating different facilities must be displayed. 
  • A code of conduct, that reflects appropriate laws governing the use of the beach and surrounding areas, should be displayed. 

Water Quality

  • The beach must fully comply with the water quality sampling and frequency requirements. 
  • The beach must fully comply with the standards and requirements for water quality analysis. 
  • No industrial, waste-water or sewage-related discharges should affect the beach area. 
  • At designated bathing waters from 2016 the water quality should be graded as ‘sufficient’ as set out in the Bathing Water Directive. (In 2015, bathing beaches should of mandatory standard.)
  • At non bathing beaches, there should be no promotion of water based activities such as swimming, surfing, etc

Environmental Management

  • The local authority / beach operator should establish a beach management committee. 
  • The local authority / beach operator must comply with all regulations affecting the location and operation of the beach.
  • The beach must be clean. 
  • Algae vegetation or natural debris should be left on the beach (exceptions apply). 
  • Bins must be available at the beach and they must be regularly emptied. 
  • Facilities for the separation of recyclable waste materials should be available at the beach. 
  • If appropriate, toilet facilities should be provided. 
  • If provided, the toilet facilities must be kept clean and have controlled sewage disposal. 
  • There should be no unauthorised camping, driving or dumping of waste on the beach. 
  • At resort style beaches dogs must be excluded from the award area of the beach during the bathing season. 
  • If a dog ban is not in force during the bathing season, a clear dog control policy must be in place before an award can be made.
  • All buildings and beach equipment must be properly maintained. 


Safety and Services

  • If appropriate, an adequate number of lifeguards and / or lifesaving equipment must be available at the beach. 
  • If appropriate first aid equipment must be available on the beach. 
  • Emergency plans to cope with pollution risks must be in place. 
  • The beach should be subject to an up-to-date risk assessment and any recommendations should be acted upon.