Refurbished seafront toilet block set on fire in vandalism spree
- Credit: Mick Howes
Seafront toilets which had undergone major refurbishment work last summer have been temporarily closed.
The public toilets below the Pagoda-style shelter at Jubilee North on Lowestoft promenade are among three toilet blocks in the town that have been closed after being damaged by arsonists and vandals in the past few days.
Public conveniences at Kensington Gardens and the Pakefield Street toilets have also been shut - with signs up to warn people they've been "Closed due to vandalism".
Police investigations are under way after a "suspicious fire" at a block of public toilets in Kensington Gardens on Kirkley Cliff Road on Saturday, June 19.
With police also called to the scene, a spokesman said: "Enquiries into the circumstances of the incident are continuing."
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A Lowestoft Town Council spokesman said: "Over the weekend, vandalism to the Kensington Gardens and Pakefield Street public conveniences occurred.
"The damage caused to the public conveniences at Kensington Gardens, located at the respected open space, included severe fire and smoke damage, destruction to pipework, sinks and the walls of the facilities.
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"The Pakefield Street public conveniences suffered damage such as toilet roll holders detached, lighting smashed inside and outside the facility, fire and smoke damage and lavatories congested with toilet rolls.
"East Suffolk Norse is currently reviewing the full damage.
"These vital facilities will remain temporarily closed until further notice.
"Further to this the Jubilee North public conveniences, which are maintained by East Suffolk Council, are also temporarily closed due to the amount of damage that was inflicted over the weekend."
An East Suffolk Council spokesman said: “Following a fire, the recently refurbished Jubilee North toilets at Lowestoft’s South Beach are currently closed.
"The fire damage mainly occurred in the baby changing facility and smoke damage has potentially caused further problems in the adjoining facilities.
“Officers are meeting with our contractors later this week to ascertain the full extent of the damage, the repairs subsequently required, and the costs involved.
"This meeting will also inform the timescale of the repairs.”
Major works had seen the public toilets on Lowestoft seafront closed for two months from May to July last year as new sensor taps and antimicrobial copper touchpoints were installed, along with brand new toilets, sinks and floors.
Witnesses or information should be directed to Lowestoft Police, quoting crime reference numbers 37/32773/21, or 37/33541/21, on 101.