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<p>Every year, the Keep Britain Tidy campaign hands out Blue Flag and Quality Coast awards to beaches throughout England, Scotland and Wales, and, this year, the Isle of Wight has come out on top in the South East. It’s great news for anybody looking forward to staying in one of our <a href=””>luxury holiday cottages in Hampshire</a> this summer, as a day trip to the island is popular with many visitors due to crossings taking as little as half an hour!</p> <p>Shanklin, Sandown and Ventnor all retained their Blue Flag status and received Quality Coast Awards, which were also given to eight more beaches around the island. With so many of these accolades, the region has demonstrated that the hard work that goes into maintaining the beaches and coasts has all paid off.</p> <p>The Blue Flag is awarded to beaches that meet strict water-quality and litter standards, whilst the Quality Coast Award recognises excellent beach management, especially when it comes to any facilities on the beach, and has water quality requirements if the beaches are used mainly for bathing. Hampshire has its own Blue Flag beach at Hayling Island.</p>