Question 21/24


What analysis will be carried out following the trial closure of some of the public toilets in Rye?

Will there be a review of financial losses to businesses and charities in the town? If so, how will that be carried out?

The Rye Heritage Centre is the home of the Town Model, a twenty minute sound and light show run by volunteers. It’s losing revenue due to having no nearby toilet facilities.


A number of public toilets across the district closed on a trial basis over the winter months. The decision was taken as Rother District Council faces a £3.8m budget shortfall for 2024/25.

Over the last eighteen months, we’ve been in negotiations to see if the provision of public toilets could be devolved to town or parish councils. There have been some very positive discussions, and some toilets have been taken on by local parish and town councils, but there is still more to be done over the coming months.

The trial came into force on 13th November 2023 and ended on Friday, 1st March 2024. During this time, the Council consulted on the impact of the closures as part of the budget consultation to determine whether the right toilets had been chosen to remain open. Everyone was encouraged to respond, including business representatives as well as residents.

We asked all respondents which of the 13 sites we had kept open during the trial closure should remain open (until other arrangements were in place) or should close and be replaced by another site. There was strong majority support that all the 13 public toilet sites should remain open from all members of the public.

There will be no further analysis or review at this stage, and the toilets that are currently closed will remain closed whilst work continues considering alternative options, including the sites being managed and operated by parish or town councils or other third parties.

Full analysis from the consultation can be found here (pages 31-39): Consultation report to cabinet 05/02/2024

In response to a number of enquiries, we have produced a webpage containing some Frequently asked questions. This webpage will be updated regularly.

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