A PUBLIC toilet in Ashbourne has been recommended by a gay ‘cruising’ website.The public convenience, in Mayfield Road, has received 1,849 views on www.cruisinggays.com which gives tips on what visitors may expect when visiting the toilet.
The webpage, which was forwarded to the News Telegraph from an anonymous email address, says the toilet attracts ‘reps, bikers, businessmen, married guys, straight men, and truckers.’ The site even says there is a ‘peephole’.
One comment says: “It is amazing this has not been listed before.” A worker at Ashbourne’s Household Waste Recycling Centre, who wanted to remain anonymous, said: “We always see cars outside there, there are always people in there doing things. You’ll go in there and if you disturb them they will run out. People go in there with their kids just to use the toilet, it’s not right.” Another eyewitness from a nearby business, who also wished to remain anonymous, said: “I’ve worked here for 20-years and there is definitely something strange going on.” A Mayfield Road resident, who wanted to keep his identity secret, said: “I’m sure a lot of people who park outside are innocently stopping off on their lunch break to read a paper or eat a sandwich but you start to recognise people who are there all the time.
“I have nothing against gays; it would be the same if it was a man or woman up to no good. It’s a public toilet.” The website warns that police carry out ‘drive-by surveillance’ and it recommends using the car park opposite the cemetery.
Section 71 of The Sexual Offences Act 2003 prohibits ‘sexual activity in a public lavatory’.
The act states: “A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or a fine not exceeding level five on the standard scale or both.” A spokesman for Derbyshire Police said: “We are aware that the toilets are occasionally used for this purpose and the cemetery is one of the areas in the town we patrol.
"Residents call us when they see suspicious activity at the cemetery and officers take positive action against anyone found acting in an anti-social way in the area."