THE phrase spend a penny will take on a whole new meaning for those passing through Chipping Norton as councillors have voted to start charging users at its last free public toilets.

Those wishing to use the facilities at New Street Car Park will soon have to pay 20p per visit.

Officers recommend that West Oxfordshire District Council's cabinet approve charging as soon as possible.

The council first started charging users for public conveniences back in 2004/05 but at the time, the car park was excluded from the 12 sites.

Figures show the New Street public conveniences were used 17,169 times during 2019/20 and 19,563 times during 2020/21.

It is inequitable for the council to charge for all other sites except this one, said the report.

This change will not impact any groups, as there is a separate unit for those with a disability which can be accessed free of charge with a RADAR key.

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