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Loss for Lisfannon but Greencastle gains Blue Flag 23.05.17

DONEGAL is enjoying bittersweet success in the Blue Flag beach awards with a loss for Lisfannon and a gain for Greencastle.
12 Blue Flags were awarded to beaches at Bundoran, Rossnowlagh, Murvagh, Fintra, Narin (Portnoo), Carrickfinn, Killahoey (Dunfanaghy), Marblehill, Portsalon (Magherawarden), Shroove, Culdaff and Downings.
Lisfannon which has held the flag for many years, lost out this bathing season, due to the water quality being just outside the required standards of excellence.
Lisfannon beach in Buncrana loses its Blue Flag for the 2017 bathing season.
Meanwhile, Greencastle on Lough Foyle is celebrating a Blue Flag for the local marina.
Donegal also had successes with Ballyheirnan (Fanad), Drumnatinney (Falcarragh), Magheroarty, Port Arthur and Dooey, as each achieved the Green Coast award again this year.
Donegal County Council chief executive Seamus Neely said: “We are delighted to have achieved a new Blue Flag for the Greencastle Marina and indeed retain the Blue Flag status for 12 of our beaches and the Green Coast award for five of our beaches.“
"And while we are disappointed not to have retained the Blue Flag this year for Lisfannon due to the fact that the water quality was just outside the required excellent standard, we will be continuing to provide the same level of support and services at this beach with a view to achieving Blue Flag status in the upcoming bathing seasons."
At Lisfannon beach, the 95 percentile value for E.coli was well within the boundary for ‘Excellent’ quality; while the Enterococci 95 percentile achieved the 'Good' water quality standard, giving an overall award of ‘Good’ but not 'Excellent' water quality.
The council insisted that Lisfannon still had "very high water quality which continues to be monitored and results will be posted over the bathing season both online at splash.epa.ie and on site via the notice boards". The local authority said the popular beach would continue to have a lifeguard service, waste disposal and other services.
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