Public toilets on an Isle of Wight seafront, which are more than 60 years old and described as a 'health hazard', could soon be redeveloped.

The current public toilets at the end of East Cowes Esplanade were installed in 1961 and are still well-used by visitors to the seafront and residents of the town.

East Cowes Town Council has, however, said the toilet block is in 'extremely poor condition' and has been 'deteriorating for some time, requiring urgent action to be taken inside and outside to ensure it is safe for the public'.

The town council has said there is black mould on the walls and ceilings, due to water ingress and being of single skin construction.

They say despite meticulous cleaning and decorating, it is "currently presenting a health hazard."

Isle of Wight County Press:

The building itself has also been the subject of vandalism, due to easy access to the roof, the town council said, so it is in 'urgent need' of improvement.

Instead of demolishing the existing building and a installing new one, the town council has said it is keen to retain as much of the current building as is practical and renovate it.

At its meeting on Thursday, the authority agreed to seek a £150,000 loan from the government to undertake the work, which would be paid back over 22 years, with repayments of £11,700 a year.

East Cowes Town Council has not raised its precept for residents in 2024/25 financial year and said it "does not intend to increase the council tax precept for the purpose of loan repayments."

Concerns were raised by a member of the public that £150,000 was excessive and the town council needed to be more prudent in spending taxpayers' money, but Mayor Tracy Reardon said they had been quoted £800,000 for a rebuild.

As part of the redevelopment, the outside of the curved building could get insulated cladding, a pitched roof and solar panels to power the building.

'Extensive' interior works would need to be done, the council said, including the rewiring, replumbing, replastering and floor replacement.

No decision has been made about whether the new facilities would be pay-to-use.