A local council has been criticised by an MSP for not providing toilet facilities in the town which hosts the beginning of the famous West Highland Way.
MSP Gil Paterson has slammed the East Dumbartonshire Council for failing to provide a public toilet facility in Milngavie town centre.
It simply isn’t good enough that we have many tourists who set off for their West Highland Way experience from the precinct and have ‘nowhere to go’
He believes that it’s unacceptable that Milngavie does not have a public toilet because it’s the gateway to the West Highland Way and also has great restaurants, shops, bars andwonderful flower displays courtesy of volunteers from Milngavie in Bloom.
He said: “It seems incredible to me that our wonderful town centre does not offer this facility and I believe the Labour/Tory/LibDem administration of East Dunbartonshire Council should provide this.
“It simply isn’t good enough that we have many tourists who set off for their West Highland Way experience from the precinct and have ‘nowhere to go’. It also causes distress to local elderly people, disabled people and children.
“Ideally, I would like to see a proper amenity, with showers and all the facilities walkers need for a ‘comfort break’ to give our overseas visitors a warm welcome to Milngavie and enhance their West Highland Way experience.
“At the very least local people should have a toilet facility which I would consider a necessity.”
The former public toilet block on the town’s Mugdock Road was run by traders after the council gave it up to save money, and then it was sold. A toilet was available in the tourist information office but that has now closed.
And Milngavie man Gavin Templeton says the entire community is behind his still-growing petition demanding public toilets.
Gil said: “I urge the council to think again about providing this facility – people power will not go away and the needs of the community should be paramount.”
Councillor Vaughan Moody, deputy convenor of development and regeneration, said: “The council decided in 2011 that it could no longer maintain the public toilet buildings in Milngavie.
“This was taken on by local traders as a short term solution.
“Council officers are now trying to find a new tenant to re-open the facility at the information office.
“In the meantime toilets are available in Milngavie Town Hall and the library during opening hours.
“Eight years of a council tax freeze has placed financial pressure on the council. Gil Paterson can call for extra public facilities but if his party has supported the council tax freeze he should not be surprised with the consequences.”