Luce Bay and Sands SAC

Status: Designated


Site overview

This site has been put in place to protect the different types of sand dunes found here. The areas of sea contain mixed boulders which are home to kelp and sea-oak, red algae and the dahlia anemone.  Worms dig into the sand, whilst brittlestars live on top, catching passing nutrients as food. The site is regularly scallop dredged by vessels from across the British Island, that MCS believes damages the site.

MPA Type

Special Area of Conservation

Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) are strictly protected sites designated under European legislation. They contribute both to the UK MPA network and set up to protect habitat types and species considered to be most in need of conservation at a European level (excluding birds).

Designation date

1 January 1996

Surface Area

487.53 km2 (188.24 mi.2)


122.61 km (76.19 mi.)

  • Intertidal mudflats and sandflats (Mudflats and sandflats not covered by seawater at low tide)
  • Subtidal sandbanks

    Sandbanks which are slightly covered by sea water all the time

  • Shallow inlets and bays (Shallow inlets and bays)
  • Reefs

    Areas where the bedrock, stable boulders and cobbles or structures created by animals arise from the surrounding seabed. They attract and provide a home to a huge variety of plant and animal life.

Did you know?…

Over half a million people have voiced their support for ‘marine protected area’ designation in the UK through our campaigns

Over 170 parliamentarians from across the political spectrum signed up to our Marine Charter calling for a network of ‘marine protected areas’ in UK Seas

Over 500,000 records on undersea habitats and species have been collected by volunteer Seasearch divers providing significant evidence for inshore ‘marine protected areas’