Friday, 28 January 2022

Finally, toilets makeover begins

Finally, toilets makeover begins

WORK has begun on the refurbishment of public lavatories in Henley — more than eight years late.

The work at the facilities in Greys Road car park started on Monday this week and is scheduled to take about eight weeks.

They toilets are being
redesigned to create two separate unisex lavatories and one for women only, a welfare room for the car park inspectors and storage space for equipment such as signs and barriers for use in the car park.

There will also be an area, named Space to Change, with a wheelchair accessible toilet and a height adjustable adult-sized changing bench and hoist.

In 2013, South Oxfordshire District Council earmarked almost £145,000 to renovate the facilities but the funding wasn’t signed off until February last year. 

The council has secured £45,000 of the cost from developers paying the community infratsructure levy.

They lavartories long been criticised by residents for being smelly and giving a poor impression to tourists.

Town and district councillor Stefan Gawrysiak said: “Public toilets can really impact a visitor’s experience of a town so it’s very important to have modern, clean facilities that leave a good impression.”

Councillor Ken Arlett said: “It’s good to see the council upgrading our public facilities and I’m sure that many of our residents and visitors will welcome the news that these toilets are to be modernised.” 

Councillor Sue Cooper, cabinet member for environment, climate change and nature recovery at the district council, said: “While we face a challenging situation financially, it’s important that we continue to invest our money wisely to improve our facilities.

“Upgrading these toilet will help to reduce our maintenance costs and improve the look and cleanliness of the facility.

“I’m very pleased that we will be installing a Space to Change in Henley. 

“Disabled people should never have to worry whether toilet facilities will be available for them in our towns. 

“Public facilities should be for everyone.”

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