More than a dozen public toilets could be closed under controversial plans outlined by the council.

Proposals could see the budget for the city’s public toilets cut by around a third - around £300,000 - with 18 sites closed from April 1.

Only 16 public toilets around public toilets would remain open across Brighton and Hove, with seven closed during the winter.

Toilets at the Royal Pavilion Gardens and The Level could also be closed under the plans.

Under the proposals, the following sites would be closed “due to insufficient budget”:

  • Black Rock, Brighton seafront
  • Blakers Park, Brighton
  • Easthill Park, Portslade
  • Greenleas, Hove
  • Hollingbury Park, Brighton
  • King Alfred, Hove seafront
  • Norton Road, Hove
  • Ovingdean Undercliff Seafront
  • Preston Park Chalet, Brighton
  • Queen’s Park Play Area, Brighton
  • Rottingdean Recreation Ground
  • Rottingdean Undercliff Seafront
  • Saltdean Oval
  • St Ann’s Well Gardens, Hove
  • Stanmer Village, Brighton
  • Vale Park, Portslade
  • Western Esplanade, Hove
  • Wild Park, Brighton

The Labour group have criticised the plans and accused the council of failing to consult with residents, users of parks and public toilets and councillors.

Nancy Platts, former council leader and Labour’s spokeswoman for the environment, transport and sustainability, said: “I know I speak for many residents when I express my outrage at the council’s plans to force through more public toilet closures, without consulting anybody and with no regard for public health, our park cafes or our tourist economy.

“I recognise the seriousness of the budget situation after 12 years of Tory cuts, but surely there are other ways to make savings and residents should have been consulted first.

“This is a false economy that undermines the council’s own public health initiatives. The plan is ill-thought through with no alternative provision near to some of the planned closures.”

Councillor Steve Davis, who co-chairs the council’s environment, transport and sustainability committee, said that “difficult decisions” have to be made to help address the council’s budget shortfall.

He said: “Like many other councils across the country, we face unprecedented financial challenges.

“The council is facing a funding shortfall of more than £20 million for next year. Unlike central government, we have to produce a balanced budget.

“This follows more than a decade of government funding cuts and settlements that have failed to keep pace with inflation that have seen our overall funding reduce by more than £100 million in real terms.

“Between 2010 and 2020, more than a fifth of public toilets across the country have closed due to chronic underfunding of local authorities.

“We know how important they are for so many visitors and residents. This is why we have worked very hard to keep most of the city’s public toilets open over a time of austerity - when many across the country have been closed.

“Our budget challenges mean it’s no longer an option to simply trim service budgets. The days when we can rely on endlessly cutting back services but essentially keep them open are unfortunately over.

“The council is taking a responsible approach to working with the money we have available.

“This means making very difficult decisions about cuts across each and every council service.

“These are not decisions we are happy to make, but we have no choice but to make savings on the public toilet budget and to focus resources on keeping the toilets in the busiest areas clean and safe for residents and visitors.”

Councillors will meet to discuss the proposals at a meeting of the environment, transport and sustainability committee next Tuesday.