Public toilets shut as Swaffham vandals strike again
Recently refurbished public toilets have been closed by a town council after “mindless vandals” continued to abuse the facilities.
The Swaffham recreation ground toilets were closed this week after thousands of pounds had been raised for work on the facilities.
A soap dispenser and light fitting were ripped off, and vandals repeatedly emptied the paper towels into the sink in the gent’s toilets.
Councillor Graham Edwards said his son James had gathered a group of local tradespeople to regenerate the toilets before the recent surge of vandalism. There is no CCTV on site.
Mr Edwards said: “James did them up to a good standard and he spent a lot of time and effort.
“The council are not happy that they have to keep going back. I went with James on Friday and it is a never-ending task.”
James told the Lynn News he had paid out of his own pocket after becoming fed up with a lack of facilities for his children to go to the toilet when activities were held at the recreation ground.
His work took roughly three-months to complete and cost him somewhere in the region of £30,000.
“These people are ruining it for everyone else which is not acceptable,” Mr Edwards added.
“You only have to go there on a summer’s day to see all the people using them [the toilets].
“I wanted to do it for the town as I was sick of going there with my children and having to pee by the tree.”
Mr Edwards, whose business is called Swaffham Stoves, said various groups and companies helped him with the work including Norfolk Plumbing and Drainage, the Kings Arms Coaching Inn, Browns Carpentry, J & M Tiling and Charlie Painting.
The work was carried out at weekends and evenings after work. The toilets were vandalised within days of the refurbishment being completed.
Swaffham mayor Jill Skinner said: “It’s really miserable of these louts who just want to spoil it for others.
“James and friends did this all in good faith .What a shame something only recently refurbished has got rubbished. I’m sure this won’t be the end of toilets there, but we will have to see how they can be managed.
“We will of course reassess the situation but as one can appreciate, at the end of the day the people of the town pay for the repairs and it’s important to give it thought as to how we go about this.”
Councillor Graham Edwards added: “There is now nowhere for people using the Rec to go to the toilet.
“And so despite the time and money expended on this, the toilets are now permanently re-closed except for functions.
“Someone must know who is responsible for this travesty.”