Local families in the Lecale area have been invited to join the Newcastle Swimming Group in a ‘big swim’ on Killough, Coney Island, Ballyhornan and Kilclief beaches this Saturday 16 August as part of a campaign by four coastal villages to win EU Bathing Water Status for their beaches.[caption id="attachment_51274" align="alignleft" width="390"] Some of the members of the Coney island Residents Association with Cllr Cadogan Enright.[/caption]
Councillor Enright believes that the beaches of the Lecale coast are being treated less favourably than the beaches in the North Down area and wants the EU to intervene to force the Northern Ireland Water and other authorities to become fully compliant with EU environmental legislation around the disposal of sewage into the sea.
Organising the event, Down District Independent Councillor Cadogan Enright said: “Part of the application process is to prove with photographic evidence that the beach is currently in use.
“Killough, Coney Island, Ballyhornan and Kilclief have each started Facebook sites to prove that they regularly have over 100 people on their beaches during the summer bathing period.
“This Saturday will be a ‘fun day’ with the aim of showing people bathing or paddling in large numbers on each of the beaches.
“To qualify to EU bathing water status we need one picture a year with a minimum of 45 people in the water (this includes paddling) or two pictures of 100 people on the beach. The villages have lots of pictures of over 100 people on their beaches, but I find it difficult to capture pictures of 45 people in the water at any one time. So we have set up this event to do just that.”
Pamela McClelland of the Newcastle Swimming Club confirmed that a free bus would be available in Newcastle Harbour at 10.30am on Saturday morning for anyone wanting to come along and support the campaign in each of the four Lecale villages. She said: “We were delighted to be asked to lend our weight to this campaign, as it will both help improve water quality right along the coast for the benefit of local families, as well as improve the potential of our area for tourism related pastimes.”
If people are travelling in their own cars, they should be in each of the four villages before the following times to get into the photo that will support that villages application.[caption id="attachment_51275" align="aligncenter" width="540"] The Killough Shore Surf and Swimming Club backs the clean beach campaign.[/caption]
Killough – 11.30am on the beach beside the Quay Coney Island – 12.30pm on the beach at Coney Island Lane Ballyhornan – 1.30pm below the carpark Kilclief – 2.30 pm below the carpark.Maurice Denvir of the Kilclief Residents Association said: “We plan to lay on a huge pot of soup and sandwhiches at Kilclief Beach for everyone who travels this far – everyone is welcome. Councillor Enright added: “This is a fun way to support and improve the local environment in a way that can have practical results from which all our families will benefit for years to come. Come out this Saturday and explore the Lecale Coastal villages and beaches”. ]]>