The Administration’s proposals to save £40,000 by closing a number of toilets in multiple locations across the town (Shoebury, Southchurch and Westcliff) with the exception of Thorpe Bay where, perhaps unsurprisingly, the Leader of the Council Ron Woodley and the Portfolio Holder for toilets Martin Terry live/represent were ill thought through, so much so that Terry decided to blame his officers rather than carry the can himself!
To propose closing toilets hardly sends the message that Southend is open for business or pleasure. Southend is a popular destination, not only the seafront for tourists and residents during the summer, but also for our shopping venues such as Hamlet Court and Southchurch Road.
To propose closing toilets whilst proposing to spend £190,000 (or £15,000 a year through borrowing costs – which was 40% of the total proposed saving from all the other toilets put together) to do up one set of toilets which, perhaps unsurprisingly again, are in Woodley and Terry’s Thorpe (Bay) ward is just loodicrous!
As Nigel Holdcroft reports, Southend’s Conservatives, councillors, ex-councillors and general activists worked together to with residents of the town to oppose this proposal and the Administration has changed its mind, rather than risk losing a vote on the matter, as we Conservatives would not have taken this lying down.
So whilst you have to pay more to live in Southend, pay more to park at the seafront, at least you’ll be able to spend the last penny you have left!