Thanet joins up for Beach Check UK app

Joss Bay is one of the beaches that can be checked on the app Photo Frank Leppard

Thanet council is the only authority in Kent to sign up to a new national app which allows visitors to check the status of a beach before they arrive.

Beach Check UK aims to help people make the checks in order to avoid congested beaches and to encourage them to discover nearby alternatives that are quieter and less crowded. The app has just launched in Thanet, as well as various destinations around the UK.

Thanet is one of the first local authorities to adopt the app, which will allow staycationers and day trippers to check the status of Margate Main Sands, Botany Bay, Joss Bay, Viking Bay (Broadstairs) and Ramsgate Main Sands.

The app works on a traffic light system that uses sophisticated technology and on-the-ground authorised users who assign a colour code to beaches according to the number of visitors, whether social distancing can be maintained and number of car park spaces.

The app is free and simple to use, downloadable from Google Play and the Apple App store (with no in-app purchases), allowing users to check individual beaches or see a map showing red (crowded), amber (less congested) and green (uncongested) beaches.

Piloted by Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council in summer 2020, the app was developed to help manage overcrowding of the area’s beaches following easing of the first national lockdown.

In its first phase, it had around 40,000 downloads. Following its successful first phase, the app was awarded further funding by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to roll it out nationally.

Cllr Reece Pugh, Cabinet Member for Economic Development at Thanet District Council, said: “We’re delighted to be one of the first local authorities to have joined this exciting new initiative. We’re expecting lots of visitors this summer and we want to help everyone to enjoy our coastline and to do so safely.

“Through Beach Check UK, people will be able to see how busy our beaches are in real time. We’d urge anyone planning to spend time at the beach this summer to download the app and get the inside scoop on where they should head to. Residents and visitors can use that information to help them choose whether to go to those beaches or visit one of the others along the 19 miles of Thanet coastline.”

There are plans to sign up more coastal locations.

Explore the Thanet coast this summer with these ideas from Beach Check UK:

NEW accommodation & cultural openings:

Bertie, Chase and Ned will share the weird and wonderful world of the crab

The launch of a Dickens-themed holiday cottage, Fagin’s Cottage, in Broadstairs, will allow families to step back in time with Victorian furniture, costumes, memorabilia, books, games and artwork. There’s also the opening of a new Crab Museum in Margate’s Old Town, with quirky interactive exhibits and a café and gift shop, and Antony Gormley’s ANOTHER TIME sculpture will be staying in Margate for another 10 years.

NEW Pier-to-Pier Cycle Trail: Active Ramsgate has launched a new guide for cyclists to travel from Ramsgate Pier to Deal Pier, taking in some of the south east’s best examples of architecture, history and nature along the way. The Pier to Pier Cycle Trail is 20 km one way, with the majority of the route on cycle-friendly paths with lots of rest and viewpoints along the way, so perfect for families. The downloadable guide features a map, pedal-by-pedal instructions, history of the area and eateries to stop at en route.

Dr Hannah Scott, aka Doctor Forager (in Minnis Bay)

Doctor Forager walks and demos: On this two-hour foraging walk with Doctor Forager, starting in Margate, you will learn how to forage sustainably and discover which wild coastal edibles are safe and tasty to eat. This will be followed by a cookery demonstration and lunch featuring your freshly-foraged treats, with dishes such as sea purslane pesto on pasta, and wild spinach with walnuts.

For more information, visit https://www.englandscoast.com/en/blog/beach-check-uk-app

7 Comments

  1. A water firm illegally pumped “enormous volumes” of raw sewage into Kent’s coast in a bid to make money, a court heard. The Environment Agency allows water firms to discharge a limited amount of untreated waste into rivers and seas.

    But Southern Water last year admitted 51 counts of dumping poisonous, noxious substances including raw sewage, after a criminal investigation. It knowingly polluted The Swale and rivers near Southampton and in the South Downs for 61,714 hours from 17 sewage works, prosecutors explained today.

  2. Regarding the Pier to Pier cycle trail, there is already a route , probably the same, laid out by Sustrans, route 15 I believe.

  3. I’m not clear who the target audience is for the beach app. When the beaches were packed last summer the coachloads of tourists just kept turning up and ignored all the warnings on the news, social media etc.

    The biggest issue with apps for irregular usage is that the user has to be bothered to be aware of it and then download it just to check what may be one thing every summer if they aren’t a regular visitor.

  4. Another summer at home. Yes more coach loads of people with no social distancing. The only thing I will be going out for is to pick up the rubbish. It’s so nice to live by the seaside. Pray for rain!oh no more sewage

  5. If I were to pray, it would be for fine weather so that I and others -locals and visitors- could go swimming in the sea.

    When will the cordon sanitaire of linked buoys be installed parallel to Ramsgate Main Sands so that jetskis cannot approach it? Of course, they shouldn’t be turning right when thay launch at Winterstoke anyway.

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