Budleigh toilet spat

PUBLISHED: 17:00 03 November 2010

BUDLEIGH councillors have criticised the district council for closing a public toilet for refurbishment work during the town’s late night shopping evening next month.

BUDLEIGH councillors have criticised the district council for closing a public toilet for refurbishment work during the town’s late night shopping evening next month.

East Devon District council gave the town council just four days notice that they were closing the Steamer Steps toilets from this week until December 10 for a £51,000 refit.

Cllr Courtney Richards said: “While we are delighted that East Devon District Council are going to refurbish the toilets, it would have been helpful if more notice of the closure could have been given. We were only advised on Thursday October 28.”

He said the problem was exacerbated because the toilets will be closed during late night shopping on December 4.

He added: “This brings many visitors to the Town and toilet facilities are needed.

“A councillor had phoned EDDC some days ago to request that the toilets be kept open late on that evening. This they agreed to do, and then they promptly reversed that decision.

“This is not the first time such work has been scheduled at very short notice and to try and avoid this in the future, plans are already in place for a group of Councillors to meet with the Chief Executive of EDDC to set up a process whereby, in future, the Town Council is advised and consulted well ahead of any such work.”

An EDDC spokesman said: “The closure is necessary so that the toilets can be stripped out and the internal fittings replaced, along with redecoration.

“The job was scheduled for November to avoid the summer season and the Christmas holidays.”

He said that other toilets in the town would be open for late night shopping.

He added: “We will be investigating the possibility of placing two portable toilets near the Steamer Steps block in time for the late shopping event.”

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