The public toilets in Cannon Hill Park, the biggest public park in Birmingham, have been padlocked up since May. The notice on the doors says ‘ closed due to the Covid19 pandemic’. The one disabled toilet (near to the entrance) has been out of use for much longer than that.
The MAC toilets are unavailable due to the facility being closed, and will not re-open this year. The cafe toilet is closed to members of the public.
Cannon Hill Park is a busy city park. It is visited every day by walkers, cyclists, dog walkers, and especially by young families who come from miles around to enjoy the green open space, to play tennis and to enjoy the mini golf, children’s train, boats and fair ground rides. This Bank Holiday there were hundreds of people enjoying the park.
It is not acceptable that there are no public toilets for them to use. It is not acceptable that there is no disabled toilet facility.
People are resorting to using the bushes as a public toilet – litter pickers have reported finding piles of human excrement and tissues.
Birmingham City Council has recently re-instated car park charges for the Cannon Hill Park car park. A FOI request in 2018 revealed in a 9 month period the city obtained over £250, 000 in car park revenue. Even with the drop of revenue between March and June 2020 it is reasonable to assume the council will have obtained sufficient revenue to absorb costs that additional cleaning and monitoring of the toilet block would entail.
There is no precedence for keeping the toilet block closed. Parks in other cities have full facilities open to the public with cleaning schedules and sanitiser.
We are calling for Birmingham City Council to re-open the public toilets in Cannon Hill Park without any further delay.