Public toilets scheme in Kettering to be reviewed

The community toilet scheme sticker in the Newlands Centre.
The community toilet scheme sticker in the Newlands Centre.

The provision of toilets in Kettering where people can spend a penny without making a purchase will be reviewed.

The current ‘community toilet scheme’ allows members of the public to use toilets at seven venues – Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, the Newlands Centre (20p charge), The Earl of Dalkeith, McDonald’s, Kettering Library and the Kettering Council offices.

But Labour councillor Maggie Don called for a ‘total review’ of the initiative, which she says is not working.

She said: “It’s a bit sad that we need to spend time talking about toilets but needs must.

“The scheme is clearly not working.

“Corn Market Hall have put keypads on their toilet doors, so if you urgently need to go you have to go to the council to get the code.

“It’s not right that we have got this situation.”

Fellow Labour councillor Linda Adams added: “I think what’s more worrying is the businesses that are opting out of the scheme.”

Despite being part of the scheme, the council came under criticism for not having a sticker on its doors which states that the venue participates in the scheme.

The public toilets in Kettering were closed a number of years ago by Kettering Council in a bid to save a six-figure sum each year.

At the council meeting, councillors representing the A6 towns said toilet provision there was improving.

Rothwell councillor Cedwien Brown said the public toilets in her town had re-opened and Desborough St Giles councillor Mike Tebbutt said the Desborough Town Council offices had just joined the community toilet scheme.

The motion was unanimously carried and the issue will now be looked at by the council’s research and development committee.