A PUBLIC toilet block in Clacton will remain open despite concerns over it being lived in by homeless people and used by drug addicts.

Fears had been raised for schoolchildren who may use the Magdalen Green toilets, off Old Road, as it is on many pupils’ routes to White Hall Academy and Clacton Coastal Academy.

Tendring Council’s cabinet heard on Friday that complaints have been made about homeless people being aggressive to Tendring Council’s cleaners.

But Nick Turner, councillor responsible for toilets, said the site would be looked as part of an overall review taking place on public conveniences across the district.

He denied claims that people had been living in the building, or had been locked in.

However, Mr Turner accepted that there had been incidents of anti-social behaviour, including drug-taking which was evidenced by a hole in the wall for used needles.

“There was someone squatting on the green in front of the toilets but they were moved on,” he added.

He said a new strategy was in the pipeline and was almost complete and the situation of the Magdalen Green site would be looked at as part of the review.

Council leader Neil Stock said the council had 44 public toilets, which is believed to be more than any other local authority in the country.

“Most councils are moving away from providing these facilities,” he added. “They cost a lot of money and are a magnet for anti-social behaviour.

“However, we are a seaside area which wants to attract visitors and we need to provide them.”