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New seafront toilets unveiled to criticism

MODERN toilets are set to be open along Bognor Regis seafront next summer.


Planning approval for them has been sought by Arun District Council. It describes the building as stylish and modern and designed to blend in with their surroundings.


The proposal also includes a new beach office to replace the current foreshore office, opposite Walton Avenue, which will be demolished to make way for the new buildings.


The council has set aside £200,000 to pay for the toilets but funding for the new office has yet to be found.


Cllr Gillian Brown, the council’s leader, said: “We are fully committed to the improvement of Bognor Regis promenade. We know that both our visitors and residents enjoy spending time on the beach. We want them to have a good time, which includes providing them with clean, modern, accessible toilets to encourage them to return.”


But Cllr Jeanette Warr, a Bognor Regis Town Council member for Hotham ward, said: “I am dismayed by the lack of consultation by Arun about these plans.


“It would have been nice if they had spoken to the town council, and especially the ward members, before they had submitted the formal plans.


“I know they will be available for public comments as part of the planning process but I am surprised Arun did not want to talk to us beforehand.”


She said she still believed the now closed underground toilets could have been refurbished and re-opened with staffing to provide a cheaper alternative to the proposed building.


The traditional toilets close to the bandstand were closed last year because Arun said they flooded and attracted anti-social behaviour.


They were replaced by temporary toilets on the promenade in May. Cllr Mrs Brown said the Portaloos’ arrival had been welcomed.


“Since the temporary toilets were installed earlier this year, we’ve had a lot of positive comments from beach visitors about what an improvement they are on the old ones.


“We anticipate an even more positive response to the new toilets once they are in place next year,” she said.


The proposed toilets would be followed by further works to improve the seafront, she said. These would include a children’s play area to complement Beach on the Beach and a new building for a food business to be marketed later in 2018.

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