THE TIDE is out for beaches in South Carrick as Girvan and Maidens meet only the minimum standard for water quality.
Maidens beach dropped from being “recommended” by the Marine Conservation Society last year to being only “mandatory” in 2013, while Girvan maintained its “mandatory” rating.
This means both beaches only met the minimum European Standard for water quality during the summer 2012 bathing season.
Only Culzean maintained its recommendation of excellence – and was one of only two beaches in South Ayrshire to achieve this – while two South Ayrshire beaches, Greenan and Heads of Ayr, failed the tests.
In Scotland as a whole water quality was down, with only 42 of the 109 Scottish bathing beaches tested in 2012 as having excellent water quality.
But Scotland wasn’t the only part of the UK to suffer from poor bathing water quality in 2012. Due to the exceptionally wet summer, every region of the UK has had fewer beaches recommended.
Relentless rain and flooding in many parts led to an increase in the amount of bacteria and viruses ending up in bathing waters – originating from agricultural and urban run-off, storm waters, misconnected plumbing, septic tanks. and dog faeces.
MCS Scotland Programme Manager, Calum Duncan, said the results show action to reduce pollution from farms and populated areas is even more urgently needed.
Girvan Rotary Club will be holding their annual clean-up of Girvan beach on Saturday April 13. Volunteers of all ages are required to help, and should assemble at Ainslie Road car park for a 10am start. Beach litter will be bagged until lunchtime. Please wear strong shoes and gloves!