Council awarded funding for inclusive toilet facilities in the district

Lichfield District Council has been allocated £94,285 to provide Changing Places Facilities in Lichfield city centre and at the National Memorial Arboretum.

The new toilet and changing facilities will be specially designed to improve accessibility for people with learning or physical disabilities and have been funded through the Government’s Changing Places Fund.

There are more than 1,700 Changing Places toilets registered nationally typically featuring a height adjustable changing bench, a centrally placed toilet with room either side for carers and handrails, hoists, a screen or curtain and non-slip floor.

They are installed in public venues so that everyone, regardless of their access needs or disability or reliance on the assistance of carers or specialist equipment, can use a toilet hygienically and with dignity.

A Changing Places facility will be created in the public toilet block at the entrance to Beacon Park on the corner of Swan Road and Bird Street, and at the National Memorial Arboretum near Alrewas.

Around £60,000 of the allocation will be used to fund the toilet facility in Lichfield and around £30,000 will fund that at the NMA.

Councillor Iain Eadie, Lichfield District Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Development, Leisure and Local Plan, said:

“We are delighted with this award from the Changing Places Fund which our officers worked hard to secure.

“Ensuring Lichfield district is inclusive is a priority and the funding will enable us to provide new toilet facilities making the city centre and Beacon Park more accessible for local people and visitors with disabilities.”

Mark Ellis, interim lead at the National Memorial Arboretum, said:

“We have recently reinforced our commitment to being an inclusive environment that is freely open to all.

“The funding for a Changing Places toilet will remove a key accessibility barrier and help us to deliver a first-class experience for all of our visitors.

“It is clear that the provision of suitable toilet and changing facilities for those that need them are vital for the enjoyment of activities that many take for granted.”

Until the Changing Places facility is installed at the National Memorial Arboretum, a Mobiloo, an attended mobile facility with hoist and changing bench will be used across its key events starting with the Vintage Fair from 30 April to 2 May.