Action group’s ‘animated’ discussions over closure of Colne toilets

Nelson Leader'Exterior of the public toilets at Colne Bus Station - they have been closed as part of a cost-saving exercise.
Nelson Leader'Exterior of the public toilets at Colne Bus Station - they have been closed as part of a cost-saving exercise.

“Animated” discussions have taken place over the closure of public toilets in Colne.

In January, Pendle Council’s Executive reluctantly decided to close the town’s facilities as part of its cost-cutting exercise.

Public toilets will remain open in Laneshaw Bridge, however public toilets in Trawden and Colne will be closed.

The bus station toilets have been closed for some time due to significant works being required, and the town council accepted they should not be reopened due to costs involved.

The Albert Road toilets have limited use, and are opened only for the Blues Festival and Remembrance Sunday. The town council has indicated that it does not feel it is practical for it to become involved in the operation of the Market Hall conveniences as they are part of a facility operated by Liberata for the council.

Throughout Pendle, toilets will remain open in Barnoldswick, Earby, and Barley, with the respective town council and parish council taking over the running and maintenance costs. But facilities in Barrowford, Newchurch, Brierfield, Salterforth, Kelbrook and Sough will shut.

Pendle Council have stated that around £114,000 will be saved as a result of the decision, and have advised Colne visitors to use toilets in shops, cafes, pubs and the market.

But for Waterside Neighbourhood Action Group, the news is unwelcome.

Chairman Derek Mann said: “There was animated discussion on the toilet situation at the last Waterside meeting. We had one gentleman who is a recovering alcoholic, and the last place he wants to go into is a pub.

“The market is not open on Tuesdays, so do you need to hold yourself in from Monday to Wednesday? Something needs to be done. Parents don’t want to take children into pubs, and you

don’t want to have to go into cafes, as you have got to spend money.”

Responding Philip Mousdale, deputy chief executive, said: “We’ve consulted all town and parish councils on our proposals to close public toilets in order to make savings of around £114,000 over the next year.

“We invited them to take over the running of facilities in their areas and some have agreed.

“Colne Town Council has accepted the need for the closures. We will be working with them to set up a community toilet scheme similar to that in Nelson. This would help to signpost visitors to Colne to the nearest toilets in shops, cafes, pubs and the market, many of which are open six days a week.”