Wales

Ten Pembrokeshire public toilets double charge to 40p

Toilet
Image caption The extra money raised will be re-invested in public toilets across the county

Toilet charges will double at 10 council-run facilities, despite public opposition during consultation.

Most of the 72 public conveniences in Pembrokeshire are free to use, but where charges are in place they will double from 20p to 40p.

Cris Tomos, cabinet member for the environment, said the extra cash would be used to improve all facilities.

Contactless card payments will be made available, and charges could be introduced at other sites, he added.

The cabinet heard on Monday that most of the 450 people who responded to consultation did not want to see charges go up, but Councillor Tomos said that was "human nature".

But he added that the money raised would be re-invested into the service, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

A report said the move could raise an extra £100,000 a year with £45,000 available for investment if usage stayed unchanged at 500,000 visits a year.

Pembrokeshire public toilets where you have to pay

Broad Haven - Marine Road

Narberth - Town Moor

Pembroke Dock - Gordon Street

St Davids - Whitesands

Saundersfoot - Regency

Tenby - Castle Beach, Multi-Storey, North Beach Car Park, South Beach and The Green

Councillor Phil Baker said he had reservations about doubling the charge, expected from April, and abstained from the vote.

But Paul Miller, cabinet member for the economy, said the "bigger barrier" to charging for toilets was people needing to ensure they had the necessary change.

He also pointed out that while day-trippers to Skomer Island were charged by the National Trust for parking and by boat operators for the crossing, the council maintained toilets for free.

In response, Councillor Tomos said the council was encouraging and supporting businesses in making their toilets available to the public.

The Welsh Government will also be urged to remove business rates on toilets, as has happened in England, the meeting heard.

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