Owner of Seaton Carew beach huts says vandalisation and anti-social behavior is 'soul destroying'

The beach huts at Seaton Carew. Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees

There are plans to dismantle beach huts at Seaton Carew after vandalisation and being used as toilets.

The eight coloured huts were installed on the town's seafront in 2018 as part of a revamp of the seaside resort.

Three huts are owned by Hartlepool Borough Council and five by business owner Stuart Marshall.

Each has drink making facilities inside and are rented out during the school holidays, but Mr Marshall says he is so fed up of anti-social behaviour at Seaton Carew he is going to have them dismantled.

In recent weeks he says youths have been jumping on roofs, panels have been ripped off, stones and pebbles thrown at them and he says he has seen parents allowing their children to go to the toilet in between and at the back of the huts.

Mr Marshall also owns huts at Saltburn and says he plans on moving the five at Seaton Carew there.

Stuart Marshall at Seaton Carew beach huts

Stuart Marshall says he has asked Hartlepool Borough Council for help with security and says a CCTV camera opposite the huts is pointing the wrong way.

He has called on the council to support businesses on the seafront and says he fears Seaton Carew will become a ghost town.

Mr Marshall says, "My idea of installing Beach Huts in Seaton Carew comes from my mother who used to organise trips for local kids and their parents back in the 70s.

"We used to all fight to hire a hut for the day. Eating your fish and chips, they were a great idea but bringing them to Seaton Carew, I am just disappointed. It’s costing me too much for repairs and maintaining them.

"For Easter Holidays in Saltburn I got 157 bookings and I got one for Seaton Carew. We’re not getting any backing from Hartlepool Borough Council."

Seaton Carew beach hut

Hartlepool Borough Council says it has CCTV cameras at Seaton Carew including one adjacent to the beach huts.

It also says it had not received reports of anti-social behaviour or damage associated with the huts in recent months.

A spokesperson adds, "We are very supportive of Mr Marshall’s efforts with the beach huts and are keen to make them a success.

"We had a meeting with him recently, at which we said we would help him by reviewing his marketing and website to see if we could offer any suggestions with the aim of further increasing awareness and take-up. We will also be featuring the beach huts in our upcoming ‘Summer at Seaton’ tourism promotional campaign."