A popular seaside cafe could employ a doorman to prevent non-customers from using its Toilets

Doorman could guard toilets at Herne Bay cafe Makcari’s during busy summer months, its owners claim they are forking out hundreds of pounds a week to clear blockages.

Makcari’s bosses Hassan and Nejmi Hassan say their premises in Herne Bay is inundated with visitors wanting to use the facilities during the summer – resulting in waits of up to 45 minutes.

Hassan Hassan is fed-up with his cafe being flooded with people just coming in to use the toilets. Pictures: Paul Amos
They attribute this to a lack of of public toilets between the Bandstand and King’s Hall.

In one incident, a sopping wet jet-skier nipped in to use the loos – creating a puddle on which an elderly woman slipped and broke her hip.

The brothers have been told by their insurer to only allow customers to use the toilets at the cafe, on the corner of Central Parade and William Street.

“It cost the insurance company £55,000,” Nejmi explained. “They are going to refuse to pay if somebody else gets injured.

“This year I’m probably going to have to employ someone to stand on the door and only allow my customers to go to the toilet.

An elderly woman slipped on a puddle left by a jet-skier in the toilets at Makcari’s – resulting in a huge insurance payout

“It’s not what we want to do by any stretch of the imagination, but we’ll have to come up with a solution before March.”

With jet-skiers regularly changing in and out of wetsuits, Hassan says he is having to splash out on maintenance.

“The toilets can’t cope with the volume they’re being asked to deal with,” Nejmi added.

“I’m spending hundreds of pounds a week to pay for blockages to be cleared, cleaning and broken toilet seats to be fixed during the summer.”

An elderly woman slipped on a puddle left by a jet-skier in the toilets at Makcari's - resulting in a huge insurance payout

There are seven public loos along the two-mile stretch between the King’s Hall and Hampton, but the Hassans believe more are needed. The pair have started a petition calling for the city council to erect temporary loos in Neptune car park from March to September.

Nejmi says it has already received about 200 signatures from customers at his Bandstand and corner sites.

“This is the busiest part of beach in Herne Bay,” he explained. “We need toilets at this end of the seafront.

“Quite clearly Herne Bay’s attracting a lot of visitors, so in turn we’ll need to provide them with facilities.”

But local authority spokesman Rob Davies suggests the area is flush with toilets.

He said: “We’re a little surprised that Mr Hassan is unaware of just how many public toilets we run in Herne Bay.

“These are, from east to west, King’s Hall, Bandstand outer, Bandstand inner, St George’s, Westcliff, Hampton pier and Hampton pleasure gardens.

“We’re more than satisfied that the public toilet service we provide in the town meets the needs of the people that want to use them, but look forward to receiving Mr Hassan’s petition in due course.”

In November last year, another restaurant owner in Whitstable hit back at customers who spoke out after they were refused the use of the Crab and Winkle’s loos.

A mother and daughter told KentOnline they were refused access to toilet when booking a table, but restaurant owner Elizabeth Bennett hit back by saying: “I am not a public convenience – we are a restaurant.”

Source – Kent online




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