Debate over Dovedale loos

Residents, visitors and organisations are invited to have their say on the future of the public toilets in Dovedale - which cost £17,000 a year to run – at a public meeting.

The Peak District National Park Authority is holding the meeting at Thorpe Village Hall on Tuesday November 1, from 5pm to 6pm.

The Authority’s chief executive Jim Dixon, director of operations Richard Campen and head of property Keith Jennings will be there to hear people’s suggestions for alternative ways to maintain the public toilets.

The toilets at the iconic beauty spot are owned by the Authority and cost more than £17,000 a year to run, and Chief executive Jim Dixon said: “The reality is we are faced with budget cuts of 28.5 per cent over the next four years and that means that we have to reduce spending across the services we provide.

“In other areas we have nearby facilities such as car parks or snack kiosks to subsidise our public toilets, but in Dovedale we own no other amenities. Without an income to balance the cost of maintenance we simply cannot afford to keep the toilets open beyond the end of March 2012.”

Dovedale and the surrounding land belongs to the National Trust and the car park is privately owned.

Thorpe and Ilam parish councils, Derbyshire Dales and Staffordshire Moorlands district councils, Derbyshire County Council, the National Trust and the owners of the car park have been asked to come up with suggestions.

Thorpe is about four miles north-west of Ashbourne. The village hall is on Digmire Lane in the village centre near the church, postcode DE6 2AW for satnavs. There is a ramp for wheelchairs. Parking is on the roadside so please car-share if possible.

If you are not able to attend the meeting you can make your views known by contacting customer.service@peakdistrict.gov.uk or 01629 816200, or write to Property Service, Peak District National Park Authority, Aldern House, Baslow Road, Bakewell, DE45 1AE.