Margate ‘harbour arm’ evening toilet closure due to ‘vandalism and abuse’

Thanet council says vandalism is one of the reasons for the overnight closure of the loos

Thanet council says the toilets on Margate’s Stone Pier will be closed every night from tonight (March 12).

The toilets, which are used by customers at the harbour arm’s six food and drink outlets, are being shut overnight due to “vandalism, property damage and abuse,” says Thanet council.

A council spokesman said: “A decision has been taken to close and secure the Harbour Arm toilets each evening. This is due to frequent incidents of vandalism, property damage and abuse which our staff face when they are left open at night.

“They will be the last WCs to be closed and this will take place between 6:30pm and 8pm, from today.”

Additional padlocks

Ward councillor Iris Johnston said harbour arm businesses should have keys so customers can be let into the toilets but one business person said additional padlocks have been added to the conveniences meaning they are unable to get them open.

Toilet maintenance

Harbour Arm worker Billy Nicholas disputed Thanet council’s claim of the toilets being cleaned.

The BeBeached bar and floor manager said: ” I work on the harbour arm and this is all lies. The toilets are not cleaned properly, a man comes by throws water on the floor, reads his paper then leaves.

“We are not allowed to use the toilets, they padlock them all, even the disabled ones. What do I tell my customers, ‘sorry you can’t use the loo because the council won’t look after them?’.

“All of us working on the arm offered to take over the toilet maintenance and cleaning and were refused due to, and I quote. “the council maintain proper upkeep”. It’s nothing but the lazy council doing little as possible.

 “The picture is old and the only key we have is to the disabled toilet, which along with the others is padlocked.”
Mr Nicholas said businesses on the arm were willing to take on responsibility for the toilets.


  1. Added to nuisance for everyone on closures are the unfortunate people who have to clean the disgusting mess in the photo.

  2. The council spends plenty of money on personnel roaming the streets spot fining people for littering or dropping cigarette butts in the road – how about some spent on CCTV or a nightwatchman at the toilets to prevent the vandalism?

  3. I walk my dog on the harbour every day & it’s about time this ongoing problem is brought to light. The toilets are a disgrace on the Harbour & should be locked at night as they are left open 24hours. No other public toilets are open. The businesses do not lock them when they close or clean them. Only going to attract drug use, vandalism, rough sleepers etc. If the late opening businesses gave the customers a key to open & lock the toilet it might help? The harbour should have cctv installed including the entrance to the toilets and a Police presence in the evenings and at weekends would be a great idea, as it is a free for all to do as they please. The cleaners do a great job but they are not there all day & night.

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