Assessment of the aesthetic quality of a selection of beaches in the Firth of Forth, Scotland

S. E. Somerville, K. L. Miller, J. M. Mair

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


The aesthetic quality of fourteen beaches in the Firth of Forth, Scotland was surveyed between May and July 2002 using a protocol designed by the UK's National Aquatic Litter Group (NALG). Local authority beach cleaning regimes influence the amount of litter found on beaches. Frequent and thorough beach cleaning is necessary to maintain high aesthetic standards. Bathing and amenity beaches achieved higher aesthetic quality than non-bathing and non-amenity beaches. The aesthetic quality of rural and urban beaches was very similar. The NALG protocol appears more complicated to use than other beach litter surveys. However, the classification system generates results that are easily interpreted by the general public. Furthermore, the NALG protocol could be combined with coastal zone management plans as a useful environmental performance indicator. © 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1184-1190
Number of pages7
JournalMarine Pollution Bulletin
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2003


  • Beach litter
  • Coastal zone management tool
  • Environmental performance indicator
  • Firth of Forth
  • NALG protocol


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