Yorkshire villagers crowdfund to keep 'the last toilets on the A65' open

Residents of a Yorkshire village are trying to raise £12,000 to keep their much-used public toilets open.

The public toilets in scenic Gargrave
The public toilets in scenic Gargrave

The public conveniences in Gargrave, near Skipton, are the last remaining toilets on the A65 between Harrogate and Kirkby Lonsdale, a key tourist route which is popular with coach parties, cyclists and walkers.

They were previously maintained by the parish council, but they can now no longer afford to run them and the building was due to close on December 31.

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Villagers have formed a community group called Gargrave Needs a Toilet and have launched a Gofundme page with a £12,000 fundraising target. The dedicated volunteers have even offered to clean the facilities for free until money to pay a caretaker can be found.

Campaign organiser Simon Myers said:-

"The toilets are a vital community asset. Gargrave Parish Council has funded these public toilets for 10 years but can no longer afford to because of serious and urgent demands upon their funds.

"It costs roughly £12,000 a year to keep these toilets open. A large proportion of these costs have been wages for someone to open and close and clean the toilets. Volunteers have undertaken to do this until other funding sources can be found. In the meantime money needs to be found to pay the other expenses; water rates, consumables and some replacement facilities which are urgently required.

"We are determined to keep these much-used public facilities open. They are the last remaining public toilets on the busy A65 between Harrogate and Kirkby Lonsdale. They are used by motorists, bus passengers, cyclists on the many routes which pass through the village, walkers on the Pennine Way and the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, and of course residents and visitors to this lovely village and its greens."

The campaign has so far raised £950 in donations. To contribute, click here.