Will Polegate’s toilets soon shut down?

The public toilets in Polegate's High Street.
The public toilets in Polegate's High Street.

Concerns are mounting over the future of Polegate’s High Street public toilet after funding was turned down by Wealden District Council.

A review is underway of all public toilets across the district to look at a Community Toilet Scheme being put in place, where businesses provide such facilities instead. If this happens then the public toilets would close.

Councillor Daniel Shing said, “I can understand that some successful community schemes have been achieved. However, Polegate is very different to other towns and parishes, we have a very limited number of shops which have both male and female toilets to meet the basic requirements, but to find one with public disabled access in a shop is near impossible, maybe only the pub could offer such facilities.”

Councillor Rowena Moore, waste management portfolio holder, said, “Wealden District Council has a policy to provide public conveniences in key tourist locations, even though it has no formal obligation to provide public toilets. The council fully appreciates the need for community facilities and this has led to the development of the Community Toilet Scheme which is already successfully in place across the district. We have worked successfully with parish and town councils to provide Community Toilet Schemes in other villages and towns, where local businesses or other civic buildings receive a small annual payment in exchange for making their loos available to the public during their normal opening hours. These are generally more pleasant for people to use once they are familiar with the scheme. The council recognises the need for community facilities and no changes will be made until a suitable Community Toilet Scheme is in place in Polegate.”

A representative for Polegate Town Council said it would look at the matter and funding possibilities on March 25.