Sewer warnings on 15 Cornwall beaches after a weekend of heavy rain

More than a dozen beaches in Cornwall are currently unsafe due to raw sewage discharged into surrounding waters during the wet weekend.

Using data from water and sewer companies, Surfers Against Sewage’s online interactive map shows that at least 15 beaches have had stormwater from a sewer overflow at their location in the last 48 hours.

The Cornwall-based charity, which campaigns for cleaner waters across the UK, is providing this information to ensure people are at no risk of water quality problems and associated health risks for swimming in sewage. South West Water is licensed to let raw sewage flow into the sea from its combined drains when flooded with rainwater.

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Some other beaches in Cornwall do not have water quality data as it is not provided by the water company in the off season but could still be affected.

During a thunderstorm event, heavy or prolonged rains can quickly increase the flow of a combined sewer and cause it to overflow. Storm overflows are designed to release excess rainwater back into rivers or the sea when this happens and water companies are allowed to do so, though campaigners are fighting for laws that do so. surround are changed.

Environmental activists, including Cornwall-based Surfers Against Sewage, want discharges that damage water quality to stop. They say this happens too often and that more investment is needed to modernize the system by the water companies which are making huge profits and paying billions in dividends to shareholders.

Here are the details of the beaches that currently have warnings in place and the location of the sewer outlet.

Sennen

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Sennen Cove is a large sandy seaside resort, about 940m wide, backed by sand dunes. There are two small streams that flow onto the beach and disperse over the sand. There is an emergency sewer overflow from the Sennen pumping station which can affect the water quality, especially after heavy rains.

Perranuthnoe

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

A small rural sandy beach with some areas of rocks and pebbles. Cliffs and a picturesque village overlook the beach. There are no sewer overflows flowing directly into Perranuthnoe, but there are a number in nearby Mounts Bay that can affect the quality of the bathing water here.



Marazion Beach today (January 10) where a local thinks there is sewage. There are no sewer overflows that drain directly onto the beach here, although other spills from the surrounding area can reach the sea via the Marazion River.

Sands of Porthleven

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Porthleven West is a small pebble beach backed by high cliffs and sits directly across from the mouth of Porthleven reef break harbor, arguably one of the UK’s best waves. There are three sewer overflows in the area, one drains into the harbor, one east of the harbor mouth over rocks into the sea, and another at the western end of Porthleven West.

swan pool

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Swanpool is a pebble and sand seaside resort about 140m wide and backing onto the Swanpool Nature Reserve. There is an emergency sewer overflow from the Queen Mary Gardens pumping station that drains into the sea about 420m east of the bathing waters.

Gyllyngvase Beach

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Gyllyngvase is a popular seaside resort on the South Cornish coast located at the mouth of the River Fal. It is a long, sandy beach with a rocky reef at each end and a promenade to the west. On the site of Pendennis Castle, Gylly is a very gently sloping beach supported by beautiful gardens to the west. Although no sewer overflow drains directly into the Gyllyngvase bathing water, a nearby overflow may be assigned some 400m southwest of the beach. Other discharges into the Fal River may also have an effect here, as well as diffuse pollution.

By Sables

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

A long sandy beach about 1 km wide, Par is bordered by sand dunes as well as a brackish lagoon and Par Harbor. Two sewer overflows drain into this beach, one drains 230 m upstream into the Par River, while the other drains into the sea at Par Spit, southwest of the beach.

Bigmouth sand

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

A wide, sandy beach with rocky reef outcrops perfect for rock pooling, Widemouth Bay is a popular beach backed by low cliffs and interesting rock formations. A sewer overflow drains 270 m upstream and empties into the sea through Widemouth Bay. The quality of bathing water can also be affected by other discharges from the surrounding urban area.

Mawgan Harbor

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

A long, rural sandy beach surrounded by high cliffs and backed by sand dunes. The Menalhyl river crosses the beach. At low tide, various caves and coves are exposed. Two sewer overflows flow into Mawgan Porth beach; one 150 m upstream from the Menalhyl River and another in a small stream at the north end of the beach.

North Fistral

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

South Fistral

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Fistral is one of the UK’s most famous surfing beaches. South Fistral backs onto high cliffs and offers rock pools as the tide goes down. There is an emergency / sewer overflow from the Yellowsands Pumping Station that drains into the sea at the southern end of Fistral Beach off Pentire Headland.

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Crantock

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Located on the north Cornish coast, Crantock is a wide, sandy beach backed by dunes with a river running through the north end. Three sewer overflows surround Crantock – one drains into the Gannel River 500m upstream from the beach, one from the West Pentire pumping station on the southwest side, and another that drains into the Gannel.

Trévaunance cove

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Trevaunance Cove is a small sandy and rocky beach located in a picturesque cove surrounded by high cliffs, which is also home to SAS headquarters! A reasonable amount of sand is exposed at low tide and it is possible to walk over the rocks to nearby Trevellas, while at high tide the entire beach is covered. Two sewer overflows flow into the Trevaunance stream, 70 m and 750 m upstream from the beach. Other discharges from the surrounding urban area can also affect the quality of bathing water, especially after heavy rains.

Porthtowan

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Porthtowan is a rock, sand and pebble beach surrounded on both sides by high cliffs and rock pools and supported by the remains of a sand dune and a small river. At high tide the beach becomes narrow while at low tide large expanses of sandbanks are exposed. A number of sewer overflows flow at various places upstream from Porthtowan into the Porthtowan stream which crosses the beach before reaching the sea.

Gwithian Towans

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Gwithian Towans, located on the north Cornish coast, is a sandy and rocky beach backed by sand dunes. St Ives Bay is located to the north of this 5km stretch of beach with the Red River flowing into the sea to the north at Godrevy – two Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) drain upstream of this river and may affect water quality especially after heavy rains.

Godrevy towans

Pollution alert: Stormwater has been released from a sewer overflow at this location for the past 48 hours.

Godrevy sits at the northern end of a vast expanse of sand stretching from Hayle to the south, interrupted only by Hayle River. It is a sandy beach backed by dunes at its southern end, becoming more rocky in the north with crumbly cliffs backing onto the beach. No sewer overflow drains directly onto the beach, but there are two that drain further upstream into the Red River and sometimes affect the quality of bathing water.

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