Pay to spend a penny at King’s Lynn bus station, councillor suggests

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Visitors should have to pay to spend a penny at Lynn’s bus station as part of a £1.6 million upgrade of the facility, a councillor has suggested.

The suggestion to have paid for “superloos” was made as members of the West Norfolk Council regeneration, environment and community panel backed calls for the authority to invest £300,000 in the scheme.

Panel member Chris Crofts said the bus station, along with the Hunstanton sea front, was an “ideal place” to introduce the idea.

He said: “If you go anywhere abroad you pay and I honestly believe we ought to look at that favourably. I see no reason why, if we’re going to renovate these things, and spend money on them, we shouldn’t look at them.”

But Alistair Beales, cabinet member for regeneration, said it would be “quite a departure from policy” to introduce charges.

He said: “The bus station serves around 10,000 people a day and one of the most basic things is the toilets.

“The whole intention is to increase facility and I think it’s rather contrary to what we’re trying to achieve.”

Revised proposals for the King’s Lynn Transport Interchange project, which is designed to improve links between the bus and railway stations, were presented to the meeting.

The scheme now includes provision of a new exit onto Albion Street and Railway Road for buses travelling north, as well as measures to make Waterloo Street access only.

Officials hope work on the project will start in January. Most of the money is being drawn from planning agreements reached with Tesco and Sainsburys on their developments in the Hardwick area of the town.

Norfolk County Council has also committed around £300,000 to the project and Mr Beales said it justified the council’s tight control on its finances.

He said: “We take painful decisions to hit our budgetary expectations so we can deliver schemes like these. Projects like these are worth satisfying these challenges for.”