Stink over the Bruce Embankment toilet

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A WELL-used public convenience overlooking the famous Old Course at St Andrews was under threat of closure this week as a result of budget cuts being considered by Fife Council.

The council is looking to set its budget for the new financial year with the need to cut £120 million from its expenditure over the next four years.

And closing the facility at the Bruce Embankment - behind the Old Course and the R and A Clubhouse - was one cost-cutting measure that was due to be considered at a council meeting as the Citizen went to press yesterday (Thursday).

The public toilet is one of two in the town operated by environmental services with the other, at Church Square, not under threat.

TOURISTS

One worker at the Bruce Embankment told the Citizen he was invited to a meeting at Rothes Halls in Glenrothes last week to discuss the possible closure.

He added: ‘‘I didn’t think they would try to close that toilet, given that it’s used by a lot of tourists and is handy for everyone going to and from the Old Course.

“It would be a real blow to take a service like that away from the bus park but it certainly sounded like they have made their minds up that it will close.

‘‘Staff would get four months notice and 13 people across environmental services might lose their jobs - taking into account the other toilets for which they are responsible.”

Last year the council launched the ‘Balancing the Books’ booklet to ask residents to give their views on a range of measures being considered to cut costs. Views were sought on issues such as improving efficiency, reducing the scale of services, delivering services in new ways, charging for more services and reducing the number of buildings the council occupies.

SUBMISSIONS

Closing date for submissions to the council was last month.

Fife Council leader Peter Grant confirmed recently that they may be forced to stop providing certain services.

He said: “We have to make these decisions with the commitment that our customers continue to come first.

‘‘I’ve no doubt that, over the next few weeks and months, we’ll be talking about unpopular and difficult suggestions and that’s why it’s important that as many people as possible get involved in this Fife-wide conversation.”