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Blue Flag Beaches

Information on the Blue Flag beach scheme, including the locations of the four Blue Flag beaches in Co. Wicklow.

The Blue Flag Programme is now one of the most widely known, most recognised and valued eco labels throughout Europe and beyond. It is awarded to beaches and marinas with excellent environmental management.

The international jury awarded the Blue Flag to 90 beaches and marinas in Ireland for 2018. The Blue Flag beaches in Co. Wicklow are:

  • Brittas Bay South
  • Brittas Bay North
  • Greystones South
  • Bray South Promenade

Blue Flag criteria

The Blue Flag emblem guarantees visitors a very high environmental quality, not just in terms of bathing water quality but also in terms of the range of facilities offered such as litter and recycling bins, disabled access, toilet facilities, dog control, car parking and educational projects. Councils assist community groups with beach management plans for their local areas and works with local schools on awareness-raising projects. The Blue Flag programme is organised by the Foundation for Environmental Education in Europe (FEEE) and co-ordinated by An Taisce.

Read more about the Blue Flag scheme

2018 Results

Wicklow County Council welcomes the awarding of Blue Flags for Bray South Promenade, Greystones South, Brittas Bay North and Brittas Bay South beaches by An Taisce in recognition of the excellent water quality and facilities available at these bathing areas.

The An Taisce Blue Flags programme demands consistently excellent water quality over a four-year period.

The maritime coastline of Wicklow is one of the county’s prize assets in our tourist attraction. Our beaches combined with the harbours are a focal point for an array of activities including surfing, swimming, angling, sailing and day trippers.

The Council is delighted that, along with our four Blue Flag beaches listed above, two other bathing locations in Co. Wicklow have achieved excellent status. This brings the number of bathing locations in Co. Wicklow with the status Excellent to six:

  • Brittas Bay South
  • Brittas Bay North
  • Bray South Promenade
  • Arklow South
  • Clogga
  • Greystones South

New bathing water classification quality now includes all monitoring data for the previous four bathing seasons (2013-2017 inclusive) rather than focusing just on the most recent bathing season. A new classification of ‘Excellent’ has also been introduced for the highest quality waters. The minimum required standard is ‘sufficient’.

Classification quality is demonstrated in the fact that Bray South Promenade regained its Blue Flag, having achieved excellent status over the period.

These excellent results could not be achieved without the assistance of the public. There can be pressure points on the Brittas Bay beaches outside of the bathing season of 1 May to 15 September, resulting in traffic and litter problems. The local authority continues to liaise with local and community representatives. The assistance of An Garda Siochana is appreciated in this regard.