Quarter Of A Million To Spend A Penny

Cllr John Todd criticises Hounslow's expensive new loos

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Hounslow Council has defended a spend of nearly a quarter of a million pounds to refurbish a suite of toilets adjacent to the Council chamber.

The figure was revealed by the Council leader, Cllr Jagdish Sharma in response to a question from Chiswick councillor John Todd at Wednesday's (July 16) meeting of the Borough Council. The total spend was £248,544 and included the provision of new showers as well as six new toilets.

Cllr Todd commented: “This is an excessive sum of taxpayers’ money. I am not convinced this is real value for money. It took five months to complete which was wholly excessive too. 

“Given that the Council is actively considering moving out of the Civic Centre in a few years time this project should never been started. The funds could have been used for more important projects'

A council spokesman defended the spending and said it was necessary to cope with increased demand for toilets and install showers used by staff members cycling to work. The area is also used for conferences and by external bodies.

“The total cost of the refurbishments in Pavilion D, and specifically the toilets, along with the introduction of showers and other new facilities was £248,000.

“This involved removing asbestos, creating a fully accessible toilet, six new showers and a drying room to encourage cycling to work. The number of toilets was also increased from seven to 13, to accommodate the increased demand for these facilities as we bring in more teams into the Civic Centre from other offices around the borough.

“Keeping the building viable as an income generating venue for conferences and external bodies, as well as for staff, is very important, and this investment contributes to our ability to do so.”


July 18, 2013