A PROTEST is taking place in one of the most iconic locations in Penarth over the state of our seas.

Surfers Against Sewage, have announced a ‘paddle-out protest’ against Welsh Water on Saturday, May 20, at Penarth Pier.

The protest will start with a 'Penarth Dawnstalkers' swim at 5.15am to 6.30am at the pier, then, at 11am groups and organisations in Wales concerned about the quality of bathing water around the UK will come together.

The protests are being put on by Surfers Against Sewage Cymru, in partnership with the Welsh Rivers Union and Penarth Dawnstalkers.

Penarth Times:

Dawnstalkers at Penarth. Photo James Richardson

According to Surfers Against Sewage, Welsh Water was responsible for 81,937 sewage overflows in 2022, lasting a total of 573,201 hours in 1,831 different locations across their service area.

Penarth resident, Dawnstalkers member, and protest organiser James Tennet, 36, claimed the problem was not being taken seriously by water companies.

“In 2021, Welsh Water were responsible for more sewage discharges than any other UK water company,” said Mr Tennet.

“The problem just isn’t being taken seriously enough by those in power. We need to see a huge reduction of sewage discharges right across the UK.”

Penarth resident and co-founder of Dawnstalkers Grant Zehetmayr said we must do more.

“We used to throw human waste out of our windows and into the streets. Now we dilute it in the sea so it can be slowly reabsorbed invisibly polluting us at a microscopic level. We must do better.”

Volunteer regional rep for Surfers Against Sewage in the Vale of Glamorgan Michael Goode, said this has affected the entire region – including Barry.

“I have been involved in water testing, beach cleans and monitoring of our local rivers and sea over the past few years, and the situation is getting worse,” said Mr Goode.

“In 2019, Barry Island lost its Blue Flag status due to poor water quality and is unlikely to get it back due to Welsh Water flushing their untreated sewage into the sea along our beautiful coastline throughout the year.”

Kim Waters, co-founder at Welsh Rivers Union and a protest organiser said: “Welsh biodiversity is collapsing all around us and we need to address this now.”

For more information go to the Facebook event page at: https://www.facebook.com/events/735296384957279.