Bathers have finally been given the all clear to go into the sea off Herne Bay after a sewage spill.
Beach-goers were met with signs advising them not to take to the water after foreshore services found it had discoloured on Tuesday evening.
Environment Agency officers took pollution samples and launched an investigation into the cause of the sewage discharge.
Many beach goers still went into the water at Herne Bay despite warnings about pollution
It came from the Plenty Brook, which joins the sea adjacent to the Neptune car park.
On Wednesday, 50 laminated A4 warning signs were put up along a 500-metre stretch of the beach, from the west of the pier towards the Kings Hall.
On Friday afternoon, the warnings were finally taken down after Environment Agency tests came back as normal.
Many bathers had taken to the sea anyway, despite the advice. Some said they had no idea the beach was closed and criticised the council for not making the warnings prominent enough.
Sam Holness went into the sea at Herne Bay unaware of the warning signs
Sam Holness, who lives in Eddington Lane, Herne Bay, said: “I had no idea and the lifeguards drove right past without saying a word. We certainly would not have gone in if we had known.”
Sue Theakston, from Maidstone, was visiting Herne Bay with her six-year-old grandson Jamie, who was keen to get into the sea.
She said: “We were up at the other end of the beach earlier and told there was a sewage problem and we should move down here.
“Jamie has been in swimming but now the signs say it’s not safe here so it’s very disappointing for him.”
Neil Cogran with his 16 month-old daughter Olivia on Herne Bay beach.
Dad Neil Cogran, from Croydon, who is considering moving to Herne Bay, took his 16-month-old daughter paddling in the sea, unaware of the signs.
He said: “How are you supposed to see something so small? I’m not very happy about it because no one has been along the beach to tell us there was a problem.
“Now they are saying it’s safe to swim at this end near the Kings Hall but they have put signs up saying it’s not. It’s just sending out a mixed message.”
Council warning signs at Herne Bay beach
Environment Agency spokesman Joe Giacomelli said: “The results of samples will be used to assist in determining the full impact on the environment.
“The issue that caused the discharge was cleared on Tuesday, but the remediation by Southern Water Services continued.”