Public toilets update
In February 2020 the Trustees took the decision that, due to ever increasing demand upon its limited staffing and voluntary capacity, they no longer felt able to continue to manage the seven public toilets on behalf of Windermere Town Council. Management of the toilets has been under our control since 2011 following a decision taken by South Lakeland District Council that would have seen many of them closed down.
6 months notice was given to the Council of this decision and handover was agreed for 31st August 2020.
The subsequent impact of the Cornavirus epidemic, and concern about transmission risks, necessitated the closure of the toilets in March. However easing of lockdown restrictions in late May identified a potential need to reopen the toilets even though the impact of the epidemic was still considered high risk in our area.
BWCCT had advised Town Council that our capacity to reopen the toilets in advance of 1st September in a manner that would assure that they were Covid Secure was highly unlikely. As a consequence early termination of the agreement was proposed in order that Town Council could take over direct responsibility for operation and re-opening of the toilets.
Windermere Town Council took over this responsibility as of 31st May and BWCCT were therefore released of their obligations.
We will continue to support Town Council as best as we are able as they strive to find a solution to reopen toilets as visitor numbers return to the area in quantity.
With over 250,000 people using the toilets every year BWCCT has developed an operational model that should enable the toilets to generate sufficient revenue to sustain their provision and fund onward refurbishment and we hope that Town Council will be able to continue to provide the current provision once the impact of Coronavirus diminishes.
Local Public Toilets
Following a threat of closure to many of the eight public toilets across Windermere & Bowness, a decision was taken between BWCCT and Windermere Town Council (WTC) to take over management of the toilets from South Lakeland District Council in 2011.
BWCCT now manage seven of the local toilets in a partnership with WTC. The toilets are operated on a not-for-profit basis by BWCCT with revenue generated from payment by those using them together with an annual financial contribution from both WTC and SLDC being utilised to fund the necessary cleaning, consumables replacement, maintenance and future refurbishment of the toilets.
In April 2017 refurbishment work was completed on refurbishing the dark and dingy toilet block at Quarry Rigg Bowness. Extensive redevelopment has now provided 5 high quality unisex toilets all equipped with full disabled facilities and baby change units.
Unfortunately without a charge it would not be possible for us to maintain the delivery of the public toilets. Extensive monitoring of the facilities since taking them over has identified that the unit cost per user is 40p ( which includes VAT). Unfortunately it will be necessary to raise the entrance fee to this level on all of the facilities in due course.
Queens Park Improvement Plan