Stonehaven is one of only two resorts to fail pollution safety limits this summer, the other being Heads of Ayr in South Ayrshire. These were the only two out of 83 beaches which breached the European Union Bathing Waters Directive according to statistics just published. Failure to meet the requirements put bathers at risk of serious infections. Stonehaven and Lower Deeside councillor, Peter Bellarby, said: “I am disappointed that Stonehaven has failed to meet the requirements. Stonehaven is a prime tourist destination and the locals too have every right to expect that the sea water is safe. I am glad that electronic signs were put up warning bathers when pollution levels are high but this only happened after there had been a pollution problem on the Maxie Burn. This is the likely cause of the failure to meet the bathing waters standards. It has been most unpleasant for residents with properties alongside Maxie Burn as they have been exposed to raw sewage. Scottish Water has been working to remedy the problem on the Maxie Burn but this does involve putting a new pipe under the railway line. I realise that this is not an easy task but I have urged Scottish Water to complete the works as soon as possible.
“It is particularly unfortunate that this failure to meet the bathing waters standards has come at a time when we are seeking to improve tourist facilities and attractions in the town such as a greatly enhanced caravan park. I very much hope and expect, though, that Stonehaven will meet the bathing waters stand next season. Scottish Water and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency do need to be vigilant and respond quickly when a problem arises.”