What does the Blue Flag rating mean?
It is a certification issued annually by an organisation called the Foundation for Environmental Education (FFE) to a beach or a marina that meets the standards it sets.
The Blue Flag denotes that the criteria for water quality, safety, information, environmental education and services have been satisfied. The management of facilities by the North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) is also taken into account. If you are a dog lover check out the NNDC rules about walking your dog on the beach.
Much work has been done on the North Norfolk coast by Anglian Water to reduce pollution of the sea around our coast. I won’t describe what swimming could be like at Cromer when I was a boy and the main sewage outfall was that large pipe you can still see under the pier. I will leave it to your imagination. It was a miracle that we boys who spent a great deal of time during the summer school holiday on the beach did not suffer from horrible infections. Our immune systems must have been extremely robust. Swimming was particularly unpleasant during still days when the sea was very calm. That was when we tended to stay out of the water.
Thank goodness, all that is a thing of the past. Great news then that things have changed dramatically and you can now bathe knowing that the water is clean.