We have just been informed that the public toilets at The Haughs will be reopening.
Cllr Anne Robertson has been working tirelessly in the background, talking Aberdeenshire Council officers to get the decision to close the toilets overturned. In a mail sent this evening Cllr Robertson said
I am very happy to report SUCCESS!
Following my discussion with officers yesterday, the toilets will reopen as per the email below.
The next stage is meaningful engagement.
The E-mail from officers regarding the re-opeing said
As discussed yesterday with Cllrs Robertson and Duncan, and having done some further background work on this, we have an approach that enables the toilets to be opened for this season, and which is consistent with the decision of ISC in relation to the Public Convenience Strategy. The approach would recognise the unforeseen circumstances which unfortunately meant that the full local context was not reflected when the views of the Area Committee were being sought on this.
The ISC decision for the Council to close the facility and for the Council to no longer run the facility still stands. In light of the community interest and the potential fit with the plans for The Haughs, we will apply the decision at the end of this season. That allows good time for more discussion at a local level to determine if there is a community based way forward that could emerge. That would be a common sense approach in these exceptional circumstances and is again consistent with the ISC decision which was to also encourage local communities to manage facilities. Any proposal that emerges can be brought before the appropriate Committee in due course.
Therefore we will make arrangements for the toilets to open, once they have been cleaned, with immediate effect. We expect that to be by the end of this week.
So the toilets should be reopen by the end of the week and will remain open until the end of the season. It is now down to the community in Turriff to come up with a plan for running the toilets next year as Aberdeenshire Council are clear that they will not be running the facility in the future.
By showing that we are not going to take decisions such as this lying down, making our voices heard and having excellent councillors like Anne Robertson this has been a huge success for the community of Turriff.