Local group to keep public toilets open

Helen Young of the New Deer Community Association with councillor Norman Smith
Helen Young of the New Deer Community Association with councillor Norman Smith

The New Deer Community Association has taken over the running of the village’s public toilets.

The move comes after Aberdeenshire Council decided to close toilet facilities across the region in a bid to save over £300,000.

Helen Young of the Community Association explained: “We want to reassure the public that the toilets are still open.

“We just felt that we couldn’t let the toilets close, it would have been a step backward for the village.”

The Community Association will look after the toilets for a year trial and they have had to change the opening hours.

The toilets will now be open from 7am to 6pm from Monday to Friday and 9am to 5pm on Saturdays although those who need access to them will need to get a key from the nearby chemist.

Local councillor Norman Smith had helped the group along the way and said: “It is good to see the community taking on the toilets and trying to keep them open as they would have been a huge miss in the village.”

Head of Property and Facilities Management Allan Whyte said: “We’ve been speaking to a number of community groups to look at ways of keeping public conveniences open wherever possible and, as part of that, we had positive discussions with New Deer Community Association about the local public toilet.

“We are very pleased they have agreed to run the facility and will continue to provide advice and support as they take on the new role.”