Toilet tax will not be rolled out after councillors agreed it should be free to spend a penny

The pubic toilets in The Cloisters, in Ely.

The pubic toilets in The Cloisters, in Ely. - Credit: Archant

A 20p toilet tax has been shelved after councillors agreed that spending a penny should remain free

Plans to introduce the 20p charge have been stopped after East Cambridgeshire District councillors consulted residents and visitors and decided it would not be a good idea to go ahead with the scheme.

The consultation was part of a review of the service which looked at the current state of nine toilets in Ely, Littleport, Burwell and Fordham.

They currently cost more than £200,000 a year to run.

Councillor Bill Hunt, chairman of the asset development committee at East Cambridgeshire District Council, said: “We would like to thank all the people who took the time to complete our questionnaire on the idea of charging for using the toilets in East Cambridgeshire.

“We received very useful feedback from residents which has helped inform the review we are undertaking.

“While the council no longer intends to introduce a charge, we will continue to explore other options as our work on this area continues.”

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The council tested the funding option through a questionnaire where people were asked what they thought of the current service and whether they would be prepared to spend 20p to use the facilities if the money was reinvested in the toilets.

A total of 152 people who responded to the consultation, the vast majority of those questioned said they would not be in favour of paying.

Their replies included not having cash available, a negative impact on city and tourism, it could create anti social behaviour and saying that facilities should be free.

The council says it is now looking at other options as part of their service review.