Water Quality Sampling Information

For every designated bathing water in England, the Environment Agency monitors Escherichia coli (EC) and intestinal enterococci (IE) in the water, throughout the bathing season (15 May to 30 September).

Values can vary depending on the weather, pollution from agricultural and urban sources, storm water overflows, amongst other factors.

The readings taken over the last four bathing seasons then determine the annual classification for that water.

 

Classification                                                 Thresholds (percentile)

Excellent                 EC: ≤250 cfu/100ml ;                 IE: ≤100 cfu/100ml              (95th percentile)

Good                       EC: ≤500 cfu/100ml ;                 IE: ≤200 cfu/100ml              (95th percentile)

Sufficient                EC: ≤500 cfu/100ml ;                 IE: ≤185 cfu/100ml              (90th percentile)

Poor                        means that the values are worse than the sufficient

( ≤ means less than or equal to)

 

Escherichia coli (E.coli)

E. coli are a group of organisms found in the intestines of animals and humans and survive for a while in the environment when excreted. Many types of E. coli are not harmful but some such as E. coli 0157, can directly cause illness. The presence of the bacteria indicates that human or animal faeces may be present in bathing water and could contain other potentially harmful organisms that could cause illness.

Intestinal Enterococci (IE)

Intestinal Enterococci are found in the intestines of animals and humans although some types are environmental in origin. The presence of the bacteria indicates that human or animal faeces may be present in bathing water alongside other potentially harmful organisms that could cause illness.

 

In 2023, The Environment Agency (EA) and Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) changed the classification of the sea water quality on Littlestone Beach from GOOD to POOR.  This information has been presented to the NRTC Planning & Environment Committee. 

FHDC have now posted a notice at Littlestone Beach to advise against swimming, until the water quality improves. Water quality will not improve until Southern Water takes action to identify the sources of the IC and E Coli and eliminates these sources..

 

NRTC will be conducting regular testing of the bathing water at both Littlestone Beach (which is a designated bathing water beach) and Greatstone Beach, during the swimming season..

2024 Sampling Data

Environment Agency Data - Littlestone Beach

Intestinal Enterococci (IE)

 

Escherichia coli (EC)

 


 

New Romney Town Council Data


Littlestone Beach

Intestinal Enterococci (IE)


Escherichia coli (EC)


 

Greatstone Beach

Intestinal Enterococci (IE)


Escherichia coli (EC)