Sheffield firms asked to offer up their toilets to the public

Sheffield city centre businesses could offer their toilets up for public use.

Sheffield businesses could allow the public to use their toilets.
Sheffield businesses could allow the public to use their toilets.

Sheffield Business Improvement District, or BID, has invited its members to take part in a community toilet scheme to increase the number of public conveniences in the city centre.

Those who pay a levy to the BID will be asked to provide clean, safe and accessible toilets in convenient locations for both residents and visitors.

A map of the city centre shows few public toilets.

There are no council-run public toilets in the city centre, so people have to use those in cafes, pubs or restaurants, or at places such as the Millennium Gallery.

Paul Grogan, who is leading the project, said a lack of public toilets could put people off visiting.

"There used to be one at the top of The Moor, one where Fargate joins High Street. But when the subways were filled, the toilets disappeared.

"It's comforting to know that when you're in a particular area that there is a toilet nearby."

A map of the city centre shows few public toilets.

Any business that signs up will agree to allow the public to use their toilets during opening hours without having to buy anything. The BID will pay these businesses an annual fee as a contribution towards their running costs.

Firms will display signs in their windows showing the facilities they have available, and the BID will put up signs directing people to the toilets.

Sheffield Council ran a similar scheme with an offer of a year's free graffiti removal from participating premises, but that has largely expired, with BID taking over responsibility for graffiti removal.

Paul said: "The businesses will get a little bit of advertising out of it. People will go in to use the toilet and that business would get some extra footfall and might make a sale that they wouldn't otherwise have done."

The invitation went out yesterday, and BID hopes to have the scheme up and running as soon as possible.

Thursday late night shopping will continue tomorrow as part of the BID's AliveAfter5 campaign.

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