Bog off! Seaside toilet closures are out of order

Out of order: The public toilets on Seaburn Seafront, Sunderland

Out of order: The public toilets on Seaburn Seafront, Sunderland

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SUNSEEKERS who flocked to Sunderland seafront were caught short when they could find no public toilet blocks open.

Visitors who went to Roker and Seaburn beaches to make the most of the warm weather were left cross-legged after the sudden closure of the loos.

One desperate beach-goer was even spotted weeing in a public bin.

The toilets opposite the Seaburn Centre were closed because hot water from the taps was deemed too hot.

Temporary toilets are in place outside the Cat and Dog Steps, in Roker, while the permanent ones are being revamped – but they were also out of order for part of the weekend.

Today, the service was labelled less than bog standard.

Lakeside resident Alfie Moon hit out at city council bosses for not having working toilets along a stretch of the seafront, during one of the busiest weekends so far this year.

The 68-year-old retired printer drives across the city daily for a walk on the seafront to Whitburn cafe Minchella’s most days of the week, when the weather is nice.

“This is scandalous,” he said.

“We got to the toilets opposite the Seaburn Centre and there were posters up saying ‘out of order’.

“We’ve got temporary toilets – but they are out of order too.

“It’s been a scorcher and the toilets were still out of order.

“This is a stretch of about three miles and with the weather we’ve been having, the place is packed.”

Sunderland Council said that the Cat and Dog Steps toilets will be closed until June 18 for repair work.

Conservative councillor George Howe, who represents Fulwell, said the council should have increased toilet facilities in the area.

“There’s always been a lot of complaints about the lack of toilets, but the council seems to hold its breath over this.

“There is the Seaburn Centre, but people are not encouraged to use the toilets there. It’s a bad situation.

“It has been far worse and it’s going to continue getting worse unless something is done.”

As well as the Seaburn Centre, people often resort to going to Morrison’s supermarket, in Whitburn Road, to use the facilities there.

“It happens all the time,” said general manager Tim Corrigan.

“It’s not a problem for us but it obviously does get used a lot, more than it probably should.”

Councillor John Kelly, cabinet member for public health, said: “We can confirm that the toilets at Seaburn were temporarily closed over the weekend.

“This was due to a health and safety issue regarding hot water from the taps exceeding safe temperatures.

“The toilets at Cat and Dogs steps are also currently undergoing refurbishment, and this work is expected to be complete within the next fortnight.

“There is temporary toilet provision in place of the toilets and Cat and Dogs steps, and this was open to the public on Friday, Saturday and most of Sunday, but had to be closed late on Sunday afternoon after running out of water due to the large number of visitors to the beaches over the weekend.

“We apologise for any inconvenience caused.”

Twitter: @davidallison88

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