Beaches and seafront

Keeping our beaches clean

We have dedicated teams working hard to keep our beaches clean during summer.

Please support the teams to keep our beaches clean when you visit.

What you can do to help keep the beaches clean

  • Don't leave litter.
  • Bag any waste and put it in the bins provided.
  • If bins are full take your waste to the next available bin, or take it home to put in your bin.
  • Do not take glass on to the beach.
  • Only disposable BBQs are allowed on the beach. Make sure you dispose of the waste from these sensibly.
  • Please clean up after your dog. Litter bins are provided throughout the area which can be used for bagged dog waste.
  • Check before you leave, have you left anything other than footprints? If so please clean up.


Dogs are not allowed on Sandhaven Beach between 1 May to 30 September, between 8am and 6pm.

Dogs are allowed on Littlehaven Beach.

The impact of litter on our beaches

Litter on beaches impacts on how the beach looks, which can result in reduced visitor numbers, affecting the local economy.

It can impact on the enjoyment and safety of those who use the beach for pleasure. Discarded cans and bottles etc can cause injury.

It can also have devastating effects on the marine wildlife and birds which eat some of the litter thinking that it is food, or find themselves tangled in items.

What we do to keep the beaches clean during summer

Beach cleaners

Beach cleaners are employed between April and September, to make sure that our beaches and surrounding areas are clean and safe for those using them.

During the main summer season, the team works on a shift system so that there is cover both in the mornings and through the evening.

They will continuously empty litter bins, pick up litter, remove windblown sand from paths and anything else which is needed to make our beaches and coastal areas safe and welcoming.

Sand levelling

Due to the winds and tides along our coastline, the sands are ever shifting, which results in the dispersal of sand from some areas and the build-up of sand in other areas along the beaches.

We have a sand levelling programme which returns the sand to the areas along the beach where it is needed.

This work involves the use of heavy plant to transport the sand to the areas where it is needed.

It starts the first week of May and takes approximately 3 weeks.

No sand is ever removed from the beaches in South Shields, it is levelled out and dispersed to other areas on the beach where needed.

Sand cleaning

Sand is cleaned every day.

Once the sand levelling is complete, the sand is mechanically cleaned every day by using a 'surf rake'.

The surf rake is a piece of equipment which is towed behind a tractor, and basically this machine sieves the sand with a belt of steel tines which penetrate the sand, removing any debris and returning the clean sand to the beach.

This is carried out every morning from 6am to 11am, or earlier if there is heavy footfall on the beaches.

It is only possible to do this mechanical cleaning of the beaches once the sand levelling is complete.

We are proud of our beaches in South Shields and we want all who visit them to have a safe and pleasant experience.

Seaside Award for Sandhaven Beach

Sandhaven Beach holds a Seaside Award from the country's leading environmental charity, Keep Britain Tidy. 

This recognises that visitors are guaranteed to find a clean, safe, attractive and well-managed coastline.

For more information about Sandhaven Beach, see Visit South Tyneside: Sandhaven Beach.