TRADERS have said public toilets are essential to make their towns more appealing for visitors.
Toilets were, along with parking spaces, the most important issues put forward by members of the public when a consultation was run on £1.4m renovations to Ossett town centre which have now begun.
But traders said current plans shown to them by Wakefield Council officers did not include toilets.
And business owners in Horbury said they had also been pushing for toilet facilities to improve shoppers’ experiences.
Mark Ellerker, who runs Eller Coffee on Station Road, said toilets were important to help to attract trade to Ossett.
He said: “We know it’s a difficult decision for the local authority. But as a business owner public toilets are important because we are competing against large shopping centres that have got them.
“Because we’ve seen it published in black and white we’re just keen to know that it’s still part of the plan for the town centre.”
Andrew Earnshaw, chairman of Horbury’s Chamber of Trade, said public toilets were seen as a “basic need” for Horbury traders.
This week the council’s traffic and transportation service manager Keith Bloomfield said toilets were still part of the council’s plans for Ossett.
He said “We are still looking at how we can provide toilet facilities in Ossett.
“We will continue to explore all possible avenues including improving accessibility to the toilets at Ossett Town Hall.”
Town centre renovations began in June and are expected to be complete by next Spring.
The council declined to comment.