Bar Beach, the delight of Lagos residents, was on Sunday deserted by fun-seekers, who thronged to the popular National Theatre at Iganmu.
The beach has now been taken over by corporate organisations and real estate developers.
Mr Haruna Abba, a security man attached to one of the estates currently standing on the reclaimed part of the beach told NAN that retreat makers now go to privately owned beaches for relaxation.
He said that only members of some indigenous churches and some traditional worshipers occasionally visited the beach for prayers.
According to him, the operators of the beach charge visitors between N1, 000 and N2,000 as gate fees depending on the festival.
However, at the National Theatre, picnickers demanded for friendly environment to give children a sense of belonging.
Mr Samsudeen Muyideen, a father of two, said that the place was good for adults but lacked basic friendly facilities that could create nostalgia in children.
“I came here with my children and wife from Okokomaiko, a Lagos suburb, to catch fun but I can hardly find those things children long for here.
“The National Theatre apart from film shows ought to have some open air trappings that can create memorials in children.
“The place looks abandoned with lots of untrimmed courts and lawns capable of creating a sullen state in the minds of the younger ones,’’ Muyideen said.
Mr Timothy Yekini, a Lekki resident, who was a first-time visitor to the place said that the theatre needed an overhaul.
According to him, things that interest children are lacking at the theatre. Children of today are high-tech driven and the place needs to have ICT powered facilities for the place to remain relevant.”
Mr Ola Ibrahim, a home video CD seller, who said that patronage was low.
“It is the children that watch videos most and they tell their parents about the latest ones in town,’’ Ibrahim said.
He advised the management of the National Theatre to equip it with modern facilities that would attract visitors and picnickers.