AT 21, Cork County has the most coastal awards, including seven coveted Blue Flag beach awards, two Blue Flags for its marinas, and 14 Green Coast Awards.
Details of this year’s recipients were announced earler this week and – in a breakdown of the figures – it emerged that Cork county also has the highest number of Green Coast Awards in Ireland.
At the presentation, Sophie Bachet Granados, the international Blue Flag director, made the point: ‘These awards are not easily achieved.’
She said they represent a real effort by local authorities in co-operation with the various “Clean Coasts” groups.
The seven Cork beaches to retain their Blue Flag status this year include: Barleycove, Garretstown, Garrylucas, Inchydoney, Owenahincha, Redbarn Beach, and Tragumna.
Cork is tied with Wexford as the only county to have two marinas – namely Kinsale and the Royal Cork Yacht Club – in receipt of Blue Flags.
Blue Flags are presented as a symbol of excellence in environmental education, management, water quality, safety and services.
There were 14 Green Coast Awards presented in Cork county, including nine in West Cork, namely: Cadogan’s Strand in Schull; Rocky Bay in Robert’s Cove; Oysterhaven in Nohoval; Inchydoney in Clonakilty; Red Strand in Ardfield; Ballyrisode and Galley Cove in Goleen; Dooneen Pier on the Sheep’s Head Peninsula; Garnish Beach at Lehanmore; and the Silver Strand on Sherkin Island.
The Green Coast Awards – which are presented in acknowledgement of the area’s clean environment, excellent water quality and natural beauty – are also an indication to visitors that these locations are ‘exceptional places to visit.’