Over the past 10 years or more there has been a plethora of complaints and concerns that the Tuross Main beach and Coila Beach toilets are sub-standard. These two public facilities are now more than 40 years old and as a consequence of several decades of fair wear and tear and frequent episodes of acts of vandalism they are now both in need an urgent upgrade or total replacement given their dilapidated condition. Council are well aware that Tuross locals and tourists alike depend heavily on these toilet & shower facilities during the summer months.
Apart from being aged and in less than satisfactory condition the Main Beach public toilet block also poses personal safety issues for users, especially women, as the entrance to the toilet is isolated with its entrances located behind the toilet block and therefore away from public scrutiny.
It is noted that all of the plumbing in the shower booths of this toilet block have been removed. Council had previously advised that this was due to water restrictions and if people wanted a shower they could find one in the One Tree carpark area. When asked if an outside shower could be provided to the Main Beach block they sighted that the drainage would block with sand and it would be cost prohibitive to maintain. The unused, un-piped shower booths are a sad reminder of what must have been a good idea once enjoyed by swimmers 40 years ago.
A previous survey conducted by the Tuross Giant found that 75% of respondents would not contemplate using the toilets at Main Beach because of safety fears and the poor condition of the toilets. The Tuross Head Progress Association is now embarking upon yet another public survey of beach goers to ascertain their comments on the impact on the impressions of visitors and tourists utilising the facilities. The Tuross Head Main Beach is the only patrolled beach over the summer holiday period, and is therefore highly visited as is its toilet block. The outcome of this public relations exercise will be passed onto Council.
When taking the photographs of the Main Beach public toilet blocks yesterday John Tilbrook, Vice President of the Tuross Head Progress Association, struck up a conversation with a lady tourist from Wales who had to use the facilities. In short she said that she had been touring African countries and Australia. She reiterated that she would take home many pleasant memories of Tuross, its spectacular views and friendly people, but also her disappointment with the standard of the ablution block at Main Beach whereby she stated that she had encountered similar sub-standard facilities in some of the poverty ridden third World countries which were used by its native population.
John Tilbrook said “Council has an inventory list of all of its shire wide infrastructure maintaining a record of its aging facilities and the estimated remaining life of its buildings, such as the public toilets." "It can therefore be assumed that Council has in place a standard building programmed replacement schedule, and if so, Council must therefore know when is it plans to include these two public toilet blocks at Tuross Head in its future forward estimates/works program however whenever they are asked they reply that they have no date set and their priority to rebuild the toilet blocks is low." "In the event of having to prioritise between the two public toilet blocks, then clearly the Main Beach amenities block should take a much higher precedence as it is in worse condition than the Coila amenities and is more heavily used by beachgoers."
"If there is a standard design and estimated costing for such capital works, and the availability of funding is a pressing issue for ESC then the THPA and other community groups in Tuross are willing to combine together in one voice to lobby both of our State and Federal members of parliament in seeking specific additional funding for Council?” "We just need the Council to come to the table, admit the toilets are sub-standard and reflect poorly on our town to visitors and locals alike." "The Coila Beach toilet block also needs much work as well, as depicted in the photographs below which were taken on 21 Nov 16, albeit all photos provided lack the ‘foul smellivision’ of the occasion"
Above: photos taken by John Tilbrook of the Main Beach and Coila Beach toilet blocks
Above: a concept design for a coffee shop on top of the Coila Toilet block