The key to streamlining and reviving Southport’s fortunes is allowing visitors to ‘spend a penny’ – according to Dukes Ward Councillor John Pugh.
To save the economy going down the toilet, the former MP and Southport councillor said: ‘people are not going to spend pounds in the town centre, if they cannot spend a penny there too.’
He said: “The key to reviving activity in the town centre may well be the availability of public toilets and I am urging Sefton Council, which carries the responsibility for Public Health, to offer clear but firm guidance to local shops, cafes and pubs.
“Southport with its high number of elderly people need re-assurance about the safety but equally the availability of public toilets.
“Beauty spots like the Trough of Bowland have had public toilets open for weeks now and Motorway Service stations have sensible systems in place. It can all clearly be done.
“The automatic self-cleansing toilets should in theory be utterly safe but have been bedevilled in the past by being used by drug users.
“We need to get back to a situation where people have options and I believe the council can play a facilitating role here by offering prompt but necessary guidance. No-one needs to re-invent the wheel here. We can copy good practice from else- where. ”
According to the government’s ‘COVID-19 secure guidance for employers, employees and the self employed’ documents, their objective is: “To ensure that toilets are kept open and to ensure/promote good hygiene, social distancing, and clean- liness in toilet facilities.
Public toilets, portable toilets and toilets inside premises should be kept open and carefully managed to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.”