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General Beach Recreation

MMO Map of General Recreational Beach Use

This category refers to activities undertaken on the foreshore including beach games, beachcombing, sunbathing, rockpooling, and swimming. It does not cover beach activities which use motorised or non-motorised vehicles, wildlife watching, coasteering, bait digging, shore angling or walking/dog walking.

The map on this page illustrates the potential for beach activity in English waters as part of the MMO1064 marine recreation modelling project. The areas of highest use are shown in red, progressing down through orange and yellow to green. Use the MMO Explore Marine Plans service for more detailed information.

Natural England’s ongoing ‘Monitor of Engagement with the Natural Environment (MENE)’ studies show how many people are visiting the natural environment and how they interact with it. The publication on visits to the coast gives detailed information on participation levels and peoples’ needs and experiences.


Natural England consider the main pressure-receptor impact pathways arising from this activity are considered to be:

Activities undertaken in the sea (eg swimming) are not considered to result in underwater noise changes above ambient background levels. As such this pressure has been considered to be negligible.

Please see Natural England's report:  Marine recreation evidence briefing: general beach life (EIN034) for more detailed information on pressures, impacts, management measures and good practice.