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Water companies releasing near real-time data is 'a welcome step forward'

Swimming outdoors is great for our health, mental and physical wellbeing and enjoyment. It is an activity enjoyed by millions every year across England.

Poor water quality, and concerns about water quality, are a huge concern to the swimming community and act as a barrier to people participating.

Swim England is part of the End Sewage Pollution Coalition calling for an end to sewage discharge into the nation’s waterways.

Swim England has also joined six other national governing bodies to form the Clean Water Sports Alliance, calling for clean open water for people to enjoy the activities they love.

Alongside its partners, Swim England has been pushing for better ‘real-time’ data to enable swimmers to make more informed decisions about when and where to get in the water.

Water companies have this week released new maps showing storm discharge activity for their areas in near real-time.

Philip Brownlie, head of public affairs at Swim England, said: “Publication of this data by water companies is a welcome step forward and something we have long been calling for as a priority.

“There remain very real limitations to the data presented and of course the priority must be to tackle the scourge of sewage, and other pollution, in our waterways so that we have healthy and nature rich spaces for everyone to enjoy, but this is a welcome step in helping swimmers be better able to make decisions on when and where to swim.”

The data can be found here: