Great Yarmouth Borough Council delays decision on seafront toilets - but agrees four other spruce-ups

The toilet block on North Drive, Yarmouth has been saved from closure by seafront cafe owners.

The toilet block on North Drive, Yarmouth has been saved from closure by seafront cafe owners. - Credit: Nick Butcher

Councillors have elected to sit on plans to refurbish a set of toilets on the Great Yarmouth seafront.

Plans to refurbish the public toilets on North Drive - close to the Venetian Waterways - were among those recommended for approval as Great Yarmouth Borough Council's environment committee mulled over how to use its annual budget for toilet refurbishment.

The council currently operates 11 public toilet facilities across the borough, with £160,000 allotted to maintaining them this financial year - which began in April.

Council officers had recommended four sets for immediate refurbishment, including those on North Drive.

However, members instead decided to postpone these plans to work on better tying them in with the multi-million pound regeneration of the Waterways.

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The original suggestion was for the facilities to be remodelled into individual cubicles, in an attempt to reduce anti-social behaviour in the area.

After Labour councillor Paula Waters-Bunn raised concerns about there being insufficient female toilet facilities to suit the site once the Waterways project is complete, councillors agreed to defer the decision on these toilets.

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The committee did, however, agree to fund refurbishments for the toilets on the Ravine in Gorleston, Caister High Street and The Green in Martham.

Conservative councillor Carl Smith, chairman of the committee, said the refurbishments of the Gorleston facilities in particular needed to be carried out 'as soon as possible'.

Part of the budget was also pledged to make adjustments to the facilities in the Beach Coach Station on Nelson Road North.

Mr Smith said: 'In the past 18 months we have seen significant problems with anti-social behaviour, which is something the police have been heavily involved with.'

The committee agreed to spend £15,000 on making sure the facilities are altered so they can be solely used as comfort stops for lorry drivers - consisting of a toilet and a shower which will only be accessible via a key fob.

The future of the Market Gates toilets were also discussed, with members standing by their earlier decision to keep the facilities in operation until the precise future of the Market Place has been decided.

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