Please rethink toilet decision

Hastings Observer letters
Hastings Observer letters

From: Mark Hutchison, Sandwich Drive, St Leonards

Dear Councillor Chowney,

I learnt with disappointment that the proposed closure of the public toilets in Harold Place is to go ahead.

In earlier times, I had the notion that the Labour Council would do its utmost to protect Hastings from the depredations of central government cuts. Sadly, I have been proven wrong.

The core of the debate is whether or not these facilities are indispensable, and it is my belief that they are. Certainly, there are alternatives available, but they are not easy to find or get to.

I have lived locally for 13 years and even I am not familiar with all of them.

So imagine the confusion that would ensue, during the high season, when hundreds of visitors are in the town centre.

I am in a position to know this because I work in Hastings and numerous people ask me for directions.

Closure of the toilets in Harold Place would replace the present excellent provision of sanitary facilities with something that is barely adequate at best and totally inadequate at other times.

Like it or not, Councillor Chowney, this would be your legacy to Hastings.

The council recognises visitors are vital to the economic well-being of Hastings. That means it should do all it can to encourage them to visit the town. The provision of decent facilities must be a part of this.

In addition, there are compassionate grounds for keeping the toilets open for those who have a particular need to use them.

Am I wrong in thinking that Labour is losing its reputation for this quality?

It will not do to follow the example of other parts of the country where public toilets have disappeared.

The council’s aim should be to provide the best services possible and not to level down to the dismal realities found elsewhere.

You may ask why I write to you when the decision has already been made.

I can only appeal to you and your fellow Labour Councillors to reverse it. I, and many others, would applaud you if you reconsider.

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