Pro-Europe campaigners and surfers say water quality transformed by EU
A giant sand artwork is being created on Swansea beach today by campaigners highlighting the EU’s impact on local sea water quality.
Anti-Brexit campaigners and members of the group Swansea for Europe are being joined by local surfers to create a giant sand picture.
They say EU measures on bathing water quality mean local beaches are now much cleaner and safer, with Wales now having more blue flag beaches per mile than any other part of the UK.
Nils Dindorp, 50, from Southgate regularly surfs but recognises that the water is very different to how it was in the 1970s and 80s:
“People often got ill taking in seawater and you would find sewage floating around.
“Even out of the water, there would be tar and oil on the beaches. Surfers Against Sewage campaigned for real change and I’m glad that tougher legislation meant our beaches had to be cleaned up.
“My kids use the water now and I’m glad that they won’t face what we did.”
Fellow surfer Callum Thomas, 21, from Loughor, said:
“Clean water is so important for everyone, not just surfers. I’ve taken part in a competition where the water didn’t match what we have here on Gowerand ended up ill, and so did other competitors.
“If the sea isn’t clean, you can end up being sick for weeks so this is about more than being able to see your feet when you are swimming.”
“I’m lucky to have grown up at a time when our beaches were cleaned up and where everyone can enjoy safe bathing water.”
Paul Willner, chair of Swansea for Europe, said:
“The beaches of Swansea have never been cleaner and safer – and we have Europe to thank for it. It was European law that made Westminster clean up its act.
Beaches that were polluted with raw sewage twenty years ago now have blue flags.”