Temporary toilets installed in Margate as permanent facilities undergo repairs

Portable toilets in Margate (photo TDC)

Temporary toilets have been installed in Margate due to facilities at Bueno Ayres (Nayland) and the Harbour Arm undergoing repairs and those in The Centre are fire damaged.

Thanet council has installed the temporary toilets on Marine Terrace and near Droit House. These will stay in place until late September.

Temporary loos will also be installed at Botany Bay at the end of the month before the Easter season.

A Thanet council statement says: “The toilet provision in Margate has been impacted by the combination of ongoing repair works at Buenos Ayres and the Harbour Arm, as well as fire damage to the women’s toilets at The Centre.

“In response we have installed temporary toilets. There are some on Marine Terrace, close to the Clocktower and a further two near Droit House.

“Usually, toilets would be installed ahead of Easter weekend but due to the current works it was decided that we needed to bring this forward.

“Additional seasonal temporary loos will be in place at Botany Bay from the end of March.

“The toilets will be opened and cleaned in line with our standard toilet management schedule. They will all remain in place until late September.”

The Clocktower toilets in Marine Drive which were shut in 2019 due to ‘structural problems’ and have remained closed ever since.

The same year a review into the future of the isle’s public toilets was announced by TDC as part of a bid to save £175,000 in its 2019-20 budget. A community loo deal with local businesses was one idea suggested although no further action was made public.

Thanet council’s corporate statement for 2019-2023 stated it planned to: “Undertake a full and thorough review of our public toilet facilities including providing incentives for businesses to make good quality facilities available to the public.”

A review was then agreed in November 2020 when it was reported by TDC that a total of 28 public toilets were open to the public over the summer season with 13 on or near to Thanet beaches. The review and recommendations were due to be reported back to Cabinet members  in March 2021 although this did not take place.

The council’s 2020/21 budget  made a proposal to invest in a public toilet refurbishment programme, reversing the plan to make £175,000 in savings. Although this has not yet taken place some maintenance got underway last year.

A public toilet strategy was earmarked to be discussed at the start of this year but this is yet to happen.

Public toilets in Cavendish Street, Ramsgate, are also shut due to antisocial behaviour and drug use at the site.

Councils are not required by law to provide  loos and continuing cuts to local authority funding have resulted in public toilets plunging by more than 600 across the country since 2010.



  1. Thats nice for margate, meanwhile Ramsgate toilets have been out of closed for some time while work is done..no temp loo’s there!!

      • Didnt go down to find out,but the point is to people who are unaware of the area, they dont know they exist, and all our old loos ahev been closed and sold off over the years for various reasons, yet the main ones in the town cenmtre are closed with no isgns alerting people to the harbour

        • The point is that Wevsky wrote “Ramsgate toilets have been closed for some time” (implying “all Ramsgate public toilets”) without actually knowing if they were or not.

          • The main Cavendish street ones yes, and your point is correct the harbour ones may have been open, i didnt make it that far 😉

  2. 4 toilets? That should be enough for the summer season then!
    Steer clear of the seafront in August !!!!

    • Indeed – if the Buenos Ayres (Station Roundabout) toilets are not open for the start of the season at Easter – then the queue for the loo is going to be horrendous. It will be even worse than four years ago when the Clock Tower loos were first closed and the only ones were at the Station end of the seafront.

      Four cubicles on the seafront for men, women, children and the disabled (not to mentions the non-binaries and others) – is wholly inadequate. It is also inappropriate for the toilets to open directly onto the busy public footpath – no screening or privacy whatsoever.

  3. They are a thing of beauty a great art installation. Not only that but a working smelly art installation.

    You can use them as people are walking pasted you only a foot away.

    This is going to 1000’s to margate to see this new working smelly art installation

  4. Once again TDC short sightedness regarding provision of public loos in buildings which desperately need upgrading …once again flimsy excuses so let’s put out portaloos again !!! We are a holiday resort and we are extremely busy during spring summer and autumn where do they expect people to go! Usual excuses lack of money and they are not obliged to provide this commodity…I despair I really thought we would see an improvement in services when Ash Ashbee took over as leader of council🙄

    • Ash Ashby, Supports this Government that is still systematically stripping/selling off our assets, many that the Victorians gifted to us. For example they have sold off over 600 police stations and as many court houses. In 2017 businesses were offered I think £1800 per year to allow non customers access to their toilets. They said almost 100% NO the amount wouldn’t even cover the costs of employing cleaning staff. Don’t mention the Mayors Parlour, Winter Gardens, the Theatre Royal and a host of other public buildings. PLEASE don’t start me off!!!!

  5. The only real discernible change is that after years of neglect and head burying in the sand TDC’s. Councillors have now finally accepted they should invest in public conveniences. After all Margate and Thanet is a tourist destination.
    Let’s hope the port a loos will be screened as the previous locations were unacceptable opening directly onto public thoroughfares .

    How on earth did Sargasso and all those other bars and eateries on the harbour arm obtain licences with the lack of access to toilets on their premises and given the filthy and dilapidated state of the single public convenience on the harbour arm?

  6. Instead of building more art galleries invest the money in repairing facilities like the loos all around Thanet, not just Margate, fixing and manning the disabled lifts in Broadstairs and Ramsgate, repairing and monitoring the multi story car parks and a slew of other problems that have existed and have been know about by TDC for years now. There’s no point in galleries (and tbh there’s no point in more galleries full stop imo) if tourists think the area is run down, derelict and don’t want to come here.

    • An interesting point of view – but what new galleries in Thanet are TDC building? It’s the first I’ve heard of it. Most of the galleries in Thanet to my knowledge are privately owned and run except for the Turner… so they are entirely commercial operations.

      • Your being picky even pedantic David Riddle, I’m sure you are aware it is the Arts Council that subsidises venues like the Turner and many others. With OUR taxes. Remind us all, when was the last time was there consultations a on spend?

        • Perhaps we should, individually, only pay tax for the services which we and our children until they’re 18, when they are technically adults) actually benefit from. For example,childless people wouldn’t contribute to funding education, people who don’t use swimming pools/libraries wouldn’t contribute to funding swimming-pools/libraries. That’d be a fair way of taking care of things, wouldn’t it?

  7. I dont think Thanet is a holiday or tourist resort. In bygone years, yes, but now, well that leaves a lot to the imagination.

    • My imagination must be in excellent condition then- every summer, I see plenty of people who are visiting Ramsgate.

    • Who cares where they’re from, so long as they’re enjoying themselves, behaving reasonably, and spending their money in Ramsgate?

  8. Any indication from TDC when the toilets will reopen at Buenos Ayires? I would assume the repairs would be completed in time for Easter or at latest by early May. And how the bars and restaurants on the Harbour Arm are permitted to operate without providing toilets is beyond my understanding. Surely they should be obliged to pay for the upkeep of them rather than TDC.
    And I think there should be payment for the use of all public toilets towards the cost of their upkeep. I would happily pay 20p each time – and 50p if there is an attendant.

    • How does that work for a lot of people in this near cashless society, and im sure homeless people in need of the toilet or just average people like myself wont actually have any money on them

      • When the beach toilets at the Clock Tower were in use and I was a child back in the 60s, we had to pay 1d to use them, so why not now? We expect too much for nothing these days. And I find it amazing that people are so cashless these days. But if payment for toilets were to be re-introduced then people would simply have to ensure they have coins in their pocket for such necessities.

  9. The turner centre has toilets and it’s free ! Perhaps There is an art work idea there ! Uncleaned toilet?

  10. The toilets in the centre and by the seafront shelter in Margate are always full of tramps and crackheads destroying them. The shelter is full of dirty duvets left there all day and a crazy man is always hanging about inside or outside the Clock Tower shouting and swearing at everyone. It’s the same everyday. I was told he has been banned from Canterbury, so it’s alright for him to harass the public in Margate. If all this is not dealt with by the start of the season then a lot of tourist won’t want to stay.

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