Why these public toilets have become a Hackney grot spot
- Credit: Michelle Blue
A Hackney resident has called on the owner of a disused public toilet to finally clean up what has become a “health hazard”.
Almost four years since the Gazette reported on the issue, recent heavy rain once again flooded the loos in Stamford Hill, causing dirty water to overflow towards the nearby Sainsburys.
Regular passer-by Michelle Blue said: “Since 2017, it has filled up again and again.
“I believe it is a health hazard, an environmental hazard, especially with Sainsbury’s so close by. I can’t believe it has been unresolved for so long.”
Several years ago, the toilets were bought from Hackney Council by an unknown party with the promise of converting them into retail units.
However, this has not happened and the council says it is now powerless to do anything more than clean the steps and clear the vegetation.
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Ms Blue continued: “I think it should be taken off the hands of the owner. Surely it is bypassing the legal requirements of keeping such a site?
“I am considering putting some rubber ducks on the standing water and seeing how much they rise over time.”
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Ms Blue has written to Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney, and local MP Diane Abbott.
Hackney Council said in a statement: “The disused public toilet on Stamford Hill is not owned by the council. However, the steps down to the toilet are under ownership of the council.
"A number of years ago the cabinet authorised the sale of the steps down to the WCs so the owner could develop a retail kiosk they had planning permission for.
“Unfortunately the owner has not taken this forward and has not proceeded with acquiring the steps.”