snow hill toilets in nantwich

Town councillors were driving each other round the u-bend when they clashed over how Nantwich should provide public toilets in future.

A debate which took more than an hour descended into arguments and heated remarks, with one saying “it’s Handforth Parish Council all over again”.

The debate raged after Nantwich Town Council clerk Sam Roberts presented three recommendations on how to improve public toilet provision in the town.

Snowhill toilets (pictured) have been closed for several years, and Market Street toilets are only open on market days after the cleaner retired in December before lockdown.

The three recommendations put before councillors included adding toilet cleaning duties to the job role of the new Town Ranger.

They also recommended a review of the current “Comfort Scheme” in the town, and a survey of residents on whether to pursue a business case on re-opening Snowhill toilet facilities.

But the clash occurred when Cllr Arthur Moran asked for an amendment to appoint a £20,000-a-year Town Ranger immediately. The appointment was put on hold last year due to the impact of the Covid pandemic.

Cllr John Statham argued it would not be “financially prudent” given the impact the pandemic has had on the council’s finances.

“It comes down to affordability. Since we set this budget last year things have changed. We’ve increased council tax, we’ve got no reserves.

“We can have a wishlist for future, but it’s not prudent to make this decision now,” he added.

John Statham

Cllr John Statham

Cllr Moran was heard to utter “for god’s sake” in reply, to which Cllr Statham retorted “members should remember when they are on mute when making such outbursts… it’s like Handforth Parish Council all over again”.

Cllr Moran added: “We’ve increased council tax by a significant amount, we’ve got to keep our side of the bargain now and we’ve got to deliver – including the appointment of a Town Ranger.”

Town council staff said without the appointment of a Town Ranger, there was a danger that Market Street toilets would not be able to open other than on market days Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Cllr Carole Thomas waded in, saying there was no need to survey residents over whether Snowhill toilets should reopen.

She said the facilities were needed “100%”.

And councillors agreed it was unlikely the Comfort Scheme – which sees outlets like coffee shops and restaurants allowing public to use their toilets – would be able to continue due to Covid restrictions.

Councillors eventually voted to accept the amended recommendation to appoint a Town Ranger and include toilet cleaning in the job role. Seven voted for, 1 against, 3 abstained.

The other two recommendations to review the Comfort Scheme and to survey residents on Snowhill toilets were also approved.

Survey questions on Snowhill will include overall costs of potential options, councillors said.

10 Comments

  1. Norma thomas says:

    Lol they need to open snow hill its outrageous they closed 3 toilet in the town over the years and no disabled facilities which there should be for 24 hour use

  2. JMF says:

    How about having self cleaning loos, as in other towns I’ve visited? Ok, you have to pay to use them but at least you know you are using something clean. Don’t need to employ a cleaner then so solved the problem.

  3. Anita says:

    Years ago we had to pay for to use the toilets in nantwich might be going back to that. I suppose there want someine to be a volunteer cleaner. Why do volunteers have to save the council money yet again

  4. Tom says:

    I would like to point out to the councillors and the public that the Market Toilets are open Monday to Saturday from 9.00 am until 16.30 pm and have been since the second Lockdown.

  5. MRS ALICE L GARRETT says:

    this is silly… the times we’ve had to dash off from shopping as one of my grandchildren… or even myself have been desperate for a wee 🙈

  6. Observer says:

    Cllr Moron is an absolute buffoon. The rise in council tax instigated by him was not for a Town Ranger because that would mean putting the cart before the horse, have an increase for a job that’s not been agreed. As an Independent he must have Labour party in his blood as it seems when something needs attention throw money at it is his answer. Sooner the elections come around get this Director of ANSA Environmental Services voted off he is nothing more than a total fruit cake.

  7. Ted Dyer says:

    In Newcastle town centre there has always been “open shop” if you want to use a loo, it makes good business sense as they will purchase items from the shop in return, The amount of praise these stores had was brilliant, and that was 30yrs ago when the council failed to upgrade the awful facilities to save money. Sometimes there is a better answer you just have to find it. Councils have to budget carefully, and in all honestly they are not doing their job if they dont tell the public how much is service is costing, or how much has been save due to good ideas, time to start a conversation as council tax does not cover it

  8. Shaun Ronan says:

    Perhaps Arthur Moran could clean the toilets and be usefull

    • Observer says:

      He would probably want 30k a year as it seems the town can stand it.
      166 voluntary litter pickers in Nantwich and surrounding areas and he wants his own private one at 20k a year looks like a town ranger and the lone ranger if you ask me.

  9. Anonymous toilet user says:

    Oh good. It looks like we can have a wee ( or a poo ) on more than Tuesdays , Thursdays and Saturdays. In.the absence of which , it would take more than a Town Ranger to attend to it , but wait, think of the Fines ! 🤭😄

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