Belfast Telegraph

Revealing loos were supposed to have been screened off by council

By Cate McCurry

Council staff were left red-faced after they failed to provide covering for open-air public urinals over one of the busiest weekends of the year in Portrush.

One grey plastic loo raised more than a few eyebrows in the coastal town after it was erected beside a busy road and an old people's housing development during the Easter weekend.

The toilet was placed there ahead of the annual car cruise event, which saw up to 3,000 people descend on the town on Easter Sunday.

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council agreed to provide more toilet facilities to the town for the event following widespread reports of antisocial behaviour last year.

But the plastic amenity attracted widespread criticism, with locals and visitors complaining that the loo was "too revealing".

It has now emerged that council officials were to screen off the facilities before making them available for public use.

A council spokesman said they would review their use at future events and added: "Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council was trialling a number of specialist toilet cubicles over the weekend at several locations throughout Portrush.

"These type of facilities are widely used at large events and were brought in following numerous complaints and incidents of antisocial behaviour at last year's Easter Cruise event.

"The council will be reviewing their use at future events in relation to appropriate locations and screening of additional toilets.

"The number of antisocial behaviour incidents reduced considerably from those experienced last year due to the additional temporary toilet facilities available throughout the town."

Ulster Unionist councillor William McCandless was among those who described the loos as "too revealing".

He said: "If they had the toilets secured off, the public could go in and use them, but not in the way presented. Those responsible held their hands up and said they wouldn't do it again.

"I think there are planning on using them for bigger events in the future, but certainly it would need to be screened off so ladies and children's sensitivities are not compromised. I believe it was delivered to them in a rush and they probably should have thought about it more. While they are more than likely planning on using them again, next time it will be behind screening and in a secluded area which is well marked for males to go to."

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