Public toilets across Tonbridge might be in danger of closing after the council announced a review into the future of the service, a recent news report in the local media has been able to suggest.
The options being considered include closing public toilets, retaining them, handing over responsibility to parish councils, and setting up a community toilet scheme – where businesses are paid to allow people to use their facilities without a purchase.
Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council says it has three town centre facilities, eight ‘out of town’ facilities, and four facilities in public parks.
The council says the public toilets and associated central overheads costs a quarter of a million a year.
The "cleansing" – cleaning and replenishing toiletries – is the biggest part of the public toilet budget, at just over a fifth of the annual spend.
The review’s findings will be announced in October 2018, but changes are not likely until February 2019, when the cleansing contract runs out.
If not in this review, then as things stand there will need to be closures eventually; the council says there is money in the current budget for cyclical repairs and maintenance but not for improvement and refurbishment.
Although the council has ruled out charging for entry, saying it would likely cost more than it would make, the truth of the matter is that charging a fee for access is quite often the most sensible solution when it comes to public toilets’ funding – and indeed keeping these facilities open for the general public – and this is exactly where Toilet Turnstiles could really put its experience to good work.