Chichester District Council (CDC) has moved to defend its ‘torture chamber’ public conveniences at the bottom of Midhurst’s North Street.
Visitor Edward Bush complained they were the only thing marring his trips: “The stainless steel lavatory bowls have no lids and are so low off the ground as to necessitate a virtual knee bend before reaching the rim, which is so narrow (probably for manufacturing reasons) as to cut into the users’ bottoms, the metal in addition being ice cold,” he said. The impression “is one of torture chambers, reinforced by the existence of adjacent toilets barred with huge padlocked wrought iron grilles probably costing as much as the toilets themselves.” He recommended councillors be forced to use them: “to fully understand how they have been wasting the public’s money.”
But a CDC spokesman said they were identical to award winning loos in Chichester’s Little London. “We chose them because they are robust and hygienic. It’s very sad to say, but normal toilet seats are ripped off. In Midhurst, there was a stage where the toilets were regularly vandalised.” She said they were cleaned three times a day for the 90,000 people who used them every year.