Marine Conservation Society.

Porthtowan has consistently been a “recommended beach” under the Marine Conservation Criteria.

Environment Agency

Porthtowan meets the “higher standard” for water quality as defined by the stringent testing of water carried out by the Environment Agency.

Keep Britain Tidy, Seaside Award.

In 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021,2022 & 2023 Porthtowan achieved the Seaside award, Category A – Resort Bathing Beach. This is the highest UK based award for excellent beaches and clean water quality. This recognises Porthtowan as having the very best in beach bathing water quality and beach facilities.

2020 celebrations are halted due to Covid-19 pandemic.

International Blue Flag

Every year from 2004 through to 2020 Porthtowan achieved the very highest standard worldwide for a quality beach in exceeding the criteria for the International Blue Flag Award. This year in 2017 Porthtowan achieved Blue Flag status led by the PBA with help from locals and Cornwall Council and an important donation from Sharps Brewery.

Advantages of the Seaside Award and the International Blue Flag award

Advantages of these awards for Porthtowan go way beyond the obvious recognition for water quality and a quality beach. These are:

  1. Recognised water quality and records of water samples
  2. Beach facilities such as toilets, parking etc.
  3. A measured environmental program of community initiatives including educational programs.
  4. Community pride in the village and beach.
  5. It raises the quality bar for all aspects concerning the beach.
  6. It ensures that statutory obligations/byelaws are adhered to.
  7. Increased visitor numbers to the village.
  8. It ensures best practice in health and safety.
  9. It advises a beach code of conduct emphasising beach byelaws.
  10. It requires information boards and interpretation boards.
  11. It requires a recognised method of notification of Combined Sewage Overflow Discharge.
  12. It encourages us to ensure we have “access for all”
  13. Property values are higher and properties are more desirable in a village with a Blue Flag Beach.

Blue Flag- background.


The Blue Flag Logo

The Blue Flag programme for beaches is run by the international, non-governmental, non-profit organisation FEE (Foundation for Environmental Education). The Blue Flag programme was started in France in 1985. It is now an internationally recognised programme. It challenges local authorities and beach managers in the four categories of:

  • Water quality
  • Environmental management
  • Environmental education
  • Safety.

Over the years the Blue Flag has become a highly respected and recognised eco-label working to bring together the tourism and environmental sectors within a region.

Blue Flag Presentation at Porthtowan Beach May 2015