Bathing Water

Bathing Areas of County Waterford
Six bathing waters in county Waterford are formally designated as bathing areas under national legislation. These are the major bathing areas of Ardmore, Bunmahon, Clonea, Dunmore Councillors’ Strand, Dunmore Main strand and Tramore. This designation means that they each have detailed management plans called ‘Bathing Water Profiles’ which includes assessment and management of all potential pressures on bathing water quality from the catchment area. Designated bathing waters are also formally monitored and classified based on results of water quality monitoring.

In addition to the six designated bathing waters, twelve ‘medium size’ bathing areas (Woodstown, Guillamene, Newtown Cove, Ballyquin, Curragh, Goat Island, Annestown, Ballyvooney, Boatstrand, Kilfarrassey, Whiting Bay, and Stradbally Cove) and eleven ‘small size’ areas (Abbeyside, Baile na Gaul, Ballydowane, Ballinacourty, Ballyvoyle, Garrarus, Helvick Cove, Kilmurrin Cove, Owenashad River, Seapark and Tramore Pier) are also included in the council’s monitoring programme. The major bathing areas are tested every 2 weeks, the medium every 4 weeks and the small at least once during the season, which runs from June 1st to September 15th. Members of the public should note that inclusion of an area for testing or the provision of life saving equipment does not automatically infer that bathing is recommended by Waterford City & County Council.

Waterford City & County Council annually reviews the list of designated bathing areas, focusing mainly on usage by the public, and we encourage public participation in the identification process in relation to the establishment, review and updating of designated bathing waters. Members of the public are invited to make submissions to Waterford City and County Council by letter to Water Services, Waterford City & County Council, Civic Offices, Dungarvan, or email to

Water Testing
A total of 30 bathing areas are monitored during the bathing season. Bathing waters are monitored in respect of the bacterial indicators intestinal enterococci and E coli and inspections are carried out for other pollution such as tarry residues, glass, plastic, rubber or any other waste. Testing of bathing waters is conducted, on behalf of Waterford City & County Council, by the Environmental Health section of the Health Service Executive.

Testing frequencies are tailored to the size and usage of each beach as outlined above.

If a situation arises that could be expected to have an adverse impact on bathing water quality and the health of bathers, then the Council will ensure that timely and adequate measures, including the provision of information to the public are taken, including, if necessary, prohibition of or advice against bathing. Please see the EPA SPLASH! website and local beach notice-boards for current information and updates.

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