Guide New Public Toilets

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1. Background

East Devon District Council (EDDC) ran a consultation looking at all of its public toilet sites back in 2021 asking members of the public to share their views on the best use of the money.

This was because:

  1. There had been a lack of investment in and refurbishment of EDDC's public toilets over the years. The majority of these facilities are now difficult to maintain, to clean and many require major improvement works.
  2. The Covid-19 pandemic highlighted our facilities are very difficult to maintain to the new high standard of cleanliness and hygiene that users now expect.
  3. There is an increasing funding gap between our income and the day-to-day running costs of the toilets. This means for EDDC to continue to provide the services and facilities residents and visitors expect and it needs to find a new way of working.

Each location was placed into three categories: 

Category A - Sites which underpin the community, visitor economy or town, in which we will continue to invest and maintain. All of these toilets will be refurbished.

Category B - Still relevant locally, but less well used or close to other toilets (according to proximity maps and 4/8 minute walking zones).

EDDC will be looking at other options for the site, like to:

  • Advertise lease opportunities for sites to be used for things like cafés, which include public toilets.
  • Allow town or parish councils and community groups to make bids to take over the sites. 
  • Sell the public toilets.

Category C - The council can no longer afford to run these toilets which are either less used or are in locations served by other facilitates. Town councils and community groups can be given the opportunity to operate these.

EDDC received nearly 1,300 responses in its consultation. EDDC analysed the results and can be seen in EDDC's Agenda for Overview Committee on Thursday, 25th November, 2021, 6.00 pm - East Devon.