Fringe Box



Letter: We Need More Public Lavatories Not Fewer

Published on: 23 Jan, 2022
Updated on: 23 Jan, 2022

Ward Street Public Toilets

From: Pete Gorton

In response to: Council Wants Your Help to Decide Where to Stop Spending Pennies (and Pounds)

I am a 74-year-old cyclist from Tongham. At the moment, almost all the public lavatories are in Guildford town.

Rather than close any, we need more public toilets right across the borough, including the villages. Or am I meant to cross my legs until I get home? At the moment I sometimes have to use a bush.

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Responses to Letter: We Need More Public Lavatories Not Fewer

  1. John Tester Reply

    January 23, 2022 at 11:53 am

    The decision has already been taken, as I read it. Making the public take responsibility for which ones to shut is the cowardly way out by elected councillors.

    Being a retired taxi driver, finding an open public toilet was always a problem.

    GBC does not care about the health of residents.

  2. Daniel Hill Reply

    January 23, 2022 at 2:11 pm

    There seems to be some confusion from GBC on this. I contacted Director of services Ian Doyle to discuss my proposal to buy the toilets for £1 and use revenue from advertising to pay the running cost to allow all the toilets to stay open to the public.

    I had a response from GBC on January 10 saying, “There is no proposal or decision to close any GBC public conveniences.”

  3. Valerie Thompson Reply

    January 23, 2022 at 6:24 pm

    They are still asking for the public to decide which ones to shut. It is an appalling decision by GBC. I think those of us who use them regularly should make a national issue of this problem. I will start by writing to The Telegraph.

    • Lottie Harding Reply

      January 23, 2022 at 8:27 pm

      I doubt The Telegraph is going to take any notice. Lots of councils have done this already.

      The one I work for closed its public conveniences nearly 10 years ago in favour of having a scheme whereby it pays local businesses to make their toilets available to the general public, not just customers.

      After all, it gets people into their bars, restaurants and cafes, and users might be tempted to stay.

      GBC is quite behind the times.

      • John Tester Reply

        January 25, 2022 at 9:10 pm

        If all the businesses were open 24/7 it might be practical, but they are not.

  4. Adam Aaronson Reply

    January 24, 2022 at 10:28 am

    Closing public toilets is a serious mistake.

    I think this consultation is flawed and that there is a risk it will not reach many of the people who actually use the facilities. What steps have the council taken to ensure that it is not only completed by residents who may not need public toilets rather than ensuring that it is completed by the people who need them most?

    There is an endless list of people whose work, in and around Guildford, takes them out on the road, often in neighbourhoods that they are unfamiliar with and who need to use public toilets throughout the day. These include: delivery drivers, taxi drivers, gas, electrical, telecoms engineers, construction workers, the police and other emergency services, highways engineers and many more, all of whom need public loos. In other words, anyone who doesn’t work in an office but whose job involves travelling about to do their job. Many of them may not live in the Borough of Guildford. How is the council going to survey their views?

    Perhaps this decision should be reviewed.

  5. Valerie Thompson Reply

    January 24, 2022 at 1:06 pm

    I’ve now written to Private Eye. Guildford Borough Council was their “Rotten Boroughs” winner a few years ago. With the absurd idea to close public lavatories they are on the way to winning that award again.

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