Pervert alert is more than 100 years old

A CLEANER has claimed the Bath Tap loos in Felixstowe were used as a haunt for lewd behaviour almost a century ago.The Trimley resident, who declined to be named, said that he used to clean the toilets and had to deal with the mess left behind by the men who had allegedly been soliciting sex.

By JOANNE CONSTABLE

joanne.constable@eveningstar.co.uk

A CLEANER has claimed the Bath Tap loos in Felixstowe were used as a haunt for lewd behaviour almost a century ago.

The Trimley resident, who declined to be named, said that he used to clean the toilets and had to deal with the mess left behind by the men who had allegedly been soliciting sex.


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His grandfather, who had worked as a policeman in Felixstowe from 1896, told him that the toilets on Bath Hill were well-known as a meeting point for the men as far back as the 1900s - shortly after they had been built.

The Trimley man, whose father was born in 1916, said the toilets were a kind of Mecca for the people who used them for obscene acts.

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He said he supported the Evening Star's campaign to get rid of the people who met in the toilets on Bath Hill for sex but he said he could not see the age-old problem disappearing.

The go-ahead has been given a £95,000 refurbishment to alter the building to make it into unisex toilets that have the cubicle doors on the outside so that there will be no entry to the inside of the block.

Even with these 'pervert-proof' measures, he believes the problem will not immediately disappear.

He said the police used occasionally to raid the toilets to drive out the people indulging in the indecent acts.

"The people concerned then used to disperse to other toilets in the town in small groups and would leave messages on the doors," he said.

"This place is an attraction, what ever they do these people, find a way round things."

When he used to clean the toilets he said the problem was so bad he had to tap on the doors before entering. At other times, when the men refused to come out, he said another cleaner he worked with would pour acid into the urinals to clean them and "to smoke them out". He also sometimes

sprayed water over the toilet doors.

The problem had been around in the early twentieth century, he added, but reserved society chose to turn a blind eye.

The cleaner from Trimley said since then society has changed and residents would not stand for such behaviour close to a family beach.

n Petitions continue to flow in from concerned residents and visitors to Felixstowe. Most have come from the seaside resort but many others have been sent in from people living in Ipswich, Woodbridge and Stowmarket.

To show your support for the Star's campaign to kick out those people indulging in lewd acts in the public toilets, fill in the petition form and send it to the Star's Felixstowe office at 105b Hamilton Road, Felixstowe, IP11 7BL.

You can also add your comments to the Forum on the Star's website at the web address below.

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www.eveningstar.co.uk

www.suffolkcoastal.gov.uk

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