Tourists and second home owners must PAY to use St Ives public toilets, but locals can spend a penny for free
- St Ives City Council will charge tourists for using public toilets in their town
- Locals get a special ‘wipe card’ to access the toilet
- There are eight public facilities in the popular Cornish seaside town
Tourists and second home owners visiting a Cornish coastal resort will have to pay for the use of public toilets, while the facilities remain free to locals.
St Ives City Council has announced part of its policy to lower the cost of living for its residents by imposing charges on incomes.
All eight public toilets in the town in west Cornwall were historically free for everyone, but now the local authority wants to get some money back without harming locals.
Residents of St Ives will not be required to pay to use public facilities when the new rates are introduced. Tourists and owners of second homes will have to pay to cover the cost of providing the service
All eight public toilets in the town in west Cornwall were historically free to all, but now the local authority wants some money back without harming locals
Officials admitted that maintaining the toilets “costs a small fortune every year,” with bills rising for water, cleaning and maintenance.
City Secretary Louise Dwelly said the pandemic and declining use of coins and increased use of contactless payment facilities had given the authority the idea and resources to facilitate paying use of the facilities.
She said under the scheme only those with a primary residence in the city who pay their council tax in St Ives will be allowed to use the toilets for free.
The City Council said it is still finalizing details of the new contactless toilets but is looking at ways to ensure second home owners or holiday rental users cannot use their temporary St Ives address or share access codes with their Airbnb customers, so public toilets are only really free for locals.
Ms Dwelly said: ‘We will give residents a card or code to use on their phones so if they use the public toilets it’s free. Visitors will have to pay and can use their phone or credit card for this.
‘It’s nothing new. In other towns in Cornwall you have to pay to use the public toilets. But with the number of visitors we receive each year, we feel our public toilets should pay for themselves without penalizing our residents. The option to pay contactless is new.’
Ms Dwelly said the plan will first be piloted on two of the toilets, including the one in the Sloep car park, with the others to be rolled out later this year.
Source: New feed