High costs force Irish tourist town superloo closure

A town on one of Ireland’s main seasonal tourism strips has had to close its public ‘superloo’ – meaning it is “the only town in the country” where visitors are unable access a public convenience.

Dungarvan's superloo was forced to close because of the prohibitive cost to the local council

Dungarvan's superloo was forced to close because of the prohibitive cost to the local council Image by m.a.r.c. / CC BY 2.0

Indeed the cost of spending a penny in Dungarvan in Waterford became so prohibitive – it cost the local authority €9 every time a user paid 50 cent to flush – that the council say it had no choice but to close the facility down.

 Dungarvan in Ireland has had to close the town's only public convenience due to cost

Dungarvan in Ireland has had to close the town's only public convenience due to cost Image by kanbron / CC BY 2.0

And now the town leaders are pleading with hoteliers and business people to come to the rescue by allowing local holidaymakers and visiting tourists in to their premises to avail of their facilities.

However, the Irish Examiner reported that local politicians were unhappy with the present situation, predicting it will have a negative impact on people coming into the area and claimed that Dungarvan is the only town in Ireland where such a situation exists.

For decades a toilet-block serviced the area, but that was demolished 15 years ago and replaced by a ‘superloo' on a 20-year lease. However, the cost of €30,00 to maintain the facility per year was just too much and the council had to terminate the contract at a further cost of €100,000.

The net effect of the closure means that the busy  town, with a population of 8000 in the off-peak season, has no on-street toilet for public use.

The business development manager at Dungarvan and Waterford Chamber and at Dungarvan Tourist Office, Jenny Beresford, said there were four toilets serving the town in the library, the council’s own civic office, Dungarvan Shopping Centre and in Garvey’s supermarket.

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