For several years now UK citizens have been grumbling over the lack of PUBLIC CONVENIENCES. Did you know there is a BRITISH TOILET ASSOCIATION? No, neither did I, but there is one nonetheless. Ray Martin, the director of the British Toilet Association, claimed that there are 40 per cent fewer public conveniences than there were ten years ago. Several public toilets have been quietly closed by cash-strapped councils. Others have been vandalised to the point where they are no longer fit for purpose, and thus closed too! Outdoor workers particularly affected are postmen, council groundskeepers and delivery drivers. Others affected are the elderly, the incontinent, and children. What of the estimated five million of us who claim to suffer from IBS? Even suburban railway stations have limited access to toilets.
Certainly there are a few award-winning conveniences, but these are mainly central to a city where tourists roam. Some below street-level toilets that have been closed and left derelict have in the last few years been bought from the councils and converted at great cost into private dwellings. I wonder if basement level loos were closed due to public complaints regarding cellular phone reception? Apparently, 17% of these types of calls are made and received while one party is defecating. Hey, don’t some of the latest cell phones filter out ‘unnecessary’ background noise such as lower bowel intractability?
Twenty years or so ago, several public toilets were shut to make way for free-standing automatic French loos, but they only lasted a few years. Too costly to maintain, many of these were removed. Nothing replaced them. Oh how times have changed, for when Queen Victoria ruled, British outdoor communal toilets were the envy of the world. ‘Flush’ with pride, it was said, if you hadn’t taken a dump in a British toilet, you hadn’t lived! Crumbs, there are now fewer British public toilets than there were in Roman times, yet there is a far greater need for them. Our population has spiralled out of control due to our unhealthy obsession with SEX, plus we consume so much take-out fast food, that our British bowels just cannot cope!