Disused toilets could be youth drop-in centre

Dorset Echo: CHAIN REACTION:  Councillor Geoff Petherick with the disused toilets on Portland Road, Wyke Regis CHAIN REACTION: Councillor Geoff Petherick with the disused toilets on Portland Road, Wyke Regis

A DISUSED toilet block could enjoy a new flush of life if plans to convert it into a youth centre get the go-ahead.

Weymouth councillor Geoff Petherick, together with Synergy Housing, is submitting the idea to transform the building on Portland Road, Wyke Regis.

If the plans are approved by the borough’s management committee, it will become a drop-in centre for young people.

Coun Petherick said: “I have been looking around for a permanent location for a while now.

“I’ve been chairman of the youth centre for around six years.

“It was held at All Saints School, then two churches and two community centres.

“But we haven’t been able to do all the things that we wanted to do, so to have a permanent base will be brilliant.

“The plans relate to the philosophy that every child matters.

“We want it to be a safe place where they can talk about job opportunities and a whole series of things.

“From a council point of view, we want to see the building used for the community – this is very much a community use.

“Part of the problem with the toilets and a reason they got closed was the huge cost of maintaining them – around £40,000 a year.

“They have now been closed for 18 months and this would be a positive use for them.”

A fold-away awning will be constructed at the back of the building so that it can accommodate 20 users at a time.

Those behind the idea hope to get the go-ahead on October 2.

Coun Petherick added: “We are hoping to get some of the work started straight after going through management committee.

“This will be a very positive development, a permanent home for our young people.”

A Synergy Housing spokesman said: “We’re delighted to be funding the new youth drop-in centre in Wyke Regis. This has been funded through our Neighbourhood Toolkit and responds to feedback from our customers and the community.

“We’re looking forward to when the centre’s up and running and providing real, extra support to young people in the area.”

He added that work will start ‘as soon as possible’ after permission is granted.

Comments (3)

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7:29pm Sat 8 Sep 12

lostnfound says...

A fold-away awning will be constructed at the back of the building so that it can accommodate 20 users at a time.
Users of porta potties?
A fold-away awning will be constructed at the back of the building so that it can accommodate 20 users at a time. Users of porta potties? lostnfound

8:21am Sun 9 Sep 12

ksmain says...

It should get through planning easily as it's usage hasnt changed.

It used to be a drop-in centre for people wanting to take a leak!!
It should get through planning easily as it's usage hasnt changed. It used to be a drop-in centre for people wanting to take a leak!! ksmain

8:41am Sun 9 Sep 12

Wykeite says...

£40,000 to maintain these toilets every year! No wonder we have money issues.
£40,000 to maintain these toilets every year! No wonder we have money issues. Wykeite

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