BRITAIN'S "dirtiest" beaches have been revealed – with one of the country's most loved seaside destinations among them.
The study examined over 400 beaches across the UK, looking at suspension due to sewage, faecal matter and E.coli counts in the water.
It then determined an overall water cleanliness score out of ten.
Three stretches of Blackpool Beach, which welcomes 18 million visitors a year, made the top ten of the filth table.
Blackpool North was the worst offender, returning 4.85/10 for overall water cleanliness, making in Britain's second dirtiest beach.
The Environment Agency classified the waters as poor and an E. coli count of 39 cfu/100ml was found, the highest of all Blackpool beaches.
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All of Blackpool's beaches were found to have a 10/10 pollution risk by DEFRA.
In June 2023, Blackpool North – which sits in front of Blackpool Tower – was closed due to sewage in the water, with members of the public told to stay clear.
It was among four out of five Blackpool beaches suspended due to sewage in 2023.
The dirty legacy has left visitors livid, with many posting their grievances online.
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One furious visitor wrote on TripAdvisor: "The whole place was just plain filthy – it's full of seagull excrement, rubbish everywhere, you can see empty bottles and dirty nappies washed up at sea.
"And when the waves come in there was unusual white frothing and bubbles like some sort of chemicals mixed with water."
Another fumed about Blackpool North: "Dirty coloured water, rubbish left carelessly on the beach."
And a third blasted: "There’s no other way to put it……..it stinks!! It’s the dirtiest, smelliest place I’ve ever been to here or abroad.
"There's quite obviously a sewage and or drain problem and this isn’t helped by the fact there are no public toilets, between the urination on the street, the grunge filled drains."
According to a study conducted by the Liberal Democrats, a whopping 1,504 sewage spills affected Blue Flag beaches in England last year, despite them being awarded the accolade for being safe and clean.
Environment secretary Therese Coffey said the government would be looking at lifting the £250k cap on fines for water firms who release sewage into the water.
Despite the uproar, Blackpool is by nowhere near the dirtiest.
That mucky title was won by Wharfe at Cromwheel, near Ilkley, West Yorkshire, scoring just 3.5/10 for overall water cleanliness.
The spot is in fact a river whose banks are enjoyed by thousands a year.
But it boasts faecal bacteria counts of 999 cfu/100ml, the highest of all UK beaches analysed.
Lancashire claimed five out of the top ten spots for Britain's dirtiest beaches, according to the study commissioned by Rubbish removal firm Clear It Waste.
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Other offenders included Weston Mane, in Somerset, which came third, and Heacham Beach, near Kings Lynn, Norfolk.
WASH YOUR SANDS
Britain’s dirtiest beaches by overall water cleanliness
- Wharfe at Cromwheel, Ilkley, West Yorkshire (3.5/10)
- Blackpool North (4.85/10)
- Weston Main, Somerset (4.99/10)
- Blackpool Central (5.61/10)
- Blackpool South (5.62/10)
- Dunster Beach, Somerset (5.67/10)
- St Anne's North, Fylde, Lancashire (6.20/10)
- St Anne's, Fylde, Lancashire (6.27/10)
- Weston-super-Mare Sand Bay, Somerset (6.28/10)
- Heacham, Norfolk (6.55/10)
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