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Coastal town opens toilets as holiday parks gear up for ‘manic’ Bank Holiday weekend

PUBLISHED: 09:39 22 May 2020 | UPDATED: 17:15 22 May 2020

People on the promenade at Gorleston beach in the summery weather as the lockdown exercise restrictions were eased. Picture: Denise Bradley

People on the promenade at Gorleston beach in the summery weather as the lockdown exercise restrictions were eased. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

A seaside town has made the decision to re-open a limited number of toilet facilities in anticipation of a busy Bank Holiday weekend.

Councillor Carl Smith, leader of Great Yarmouth Borogh Council. Picture: Ella WilkinsonCouncillor Carl Smith, leader of Great Yarmouth Borogh Council. Picture: Ella Wilkinson

Great Yarmouth Borough Council said there was an expectation tourists would venture “further afield” in light of eased restrictions - and would be opening public toilets at Great Yarmouth and Gorleston.

Leader Carl Smith said: “With the bank holiday weekend and second week of relaxed restrictions bringing the increased possibility of more tourists venturing further afield, we have decided to re-open a limited number of seafront toilets at Great Yarmouth and Gorleston from tomorrow for emergency use in the interests of public health, which remains our top priority.

“Provision of hand sanitiser in those toilets and more regular cleansing, along with posters encouraging hand-washing and social distancing, will help to manage the risk of inflection as far as practically possible.”

But while the council is opening public toilets, their message remains unchanged: tourists should be sensible and avoid the coast.

Head of Security Fred Folkes said that there were plenty of signs and barriers warning people the park was shut last weekend, but families Head of Security Fred Folkes said that there were plenty of signs and barriers warning people the park was shut last weekend, but families "ignored them anyway". Photo: Fred Folkes

Mr Smith said: “We still want tourists to stay away to help control the spread of this deadly infectious virus and save lives.

“Please do not be tempted to congregate on our coast, risking the safety of yourself, your family and the local community. It’s still not the right time for tourism.”

As a way of helping get this message across, the council’s seafront carparks and attractions will remain shut.

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Mr Smith added that he’d like to give “a big thank you” to the vast majority of usual tourists who “listened to our clear advice, acted responsibly and stayed away last weekend”.

He added: “While we can’t stop people from coming, ‘stay away, save lives’ is still Great Yarmouth’s clear message.”

This news comes as holiday parks such as Waxham Sands are gearing up for a “manic” Bank Holiday weekend.

Last weekend, head of security at the park, Fred Folkes, said the park had been subject to an “invasion” of “conceited” day trippers - many of whom climbed over locked gates and urinated on the dunes of Waxham Sand’s private half-mile beach.

In an update posted on the park’s Facebook page, Mr Folkes said: “We have had communication with Norfolk Police who in turn have met with our MP, and I have been told that extra resources have been put in place for this coming weekend.

“Hopefully that will deter people from urinating everywhere.


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