A local village now has public toilets worthy of its recent ‘best beach in Scotland’ award from The Times newspaper.
Deputy Lieutenant of Moray, Sue Finnegan, has officially opened two refurbished toilet blocks near the shore on behalf of The Findhorn Village Conservation Company (TFVCC), following their Community Asset Transferred (CAT) from Moray Council last year.
She said: “TFVCC volunteers are constantly fundraising and managing projects which enhance the village. Not only new loos but also new beach steps for easy access to the back shore; a new car park; a new mobile home park in 2021; continuing improvements to the Dunes Road; and the organising of national celebrations in the village. There is much else besides! I am very proud to congratulate the TFVCC on all they achieve for the village and to declare their latest project and vital facility open!”
Deputy Lieutenant of Moray Sue Finnegan says a few words.Deputy Lieutenant of Moray Sue Finnegan says a few words.
Before the CAT in 2022, TFVCC leased the block in the beach car park from Moray Council, funded its cleaning and provided toilet rolls and soap dispensers donated by residents.
The blocks were in place for many years and were run down – TFVCC raised the funds to refurbish them. Funding was granted from organisations including £76,000 from the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund. A further grant of £5000 came from Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm Ltd and Visit Moray Speyside funded installation of electricity in both blocks. Funds raised from the motor home park and donations made for car parking also helped.
TFVCC secretary, Cathy Low, confirmed both blocks have been re-clad.
She added: “We have re-used anything viable but most of the sanitary ware is new. We aim to keep the toilets open 24/7 so installation of electricity is important for safety.
“Our main contractor, builder Jason Brodie, employed a local young person as his apprentice, due to the volume of work. The refurbishment of the toilet blocks and the beach steps is proving to be great work experience!”
TFVC chairwoman, Christine Hunt, confirmed refurbishment of the toilet blocks is part of a larger project to improve facilities.
She said: “Creation of the motor home park, resurfacing of the car parks and road to the back beach has been completed. Replacement of the beach steps and boardwalks is well underway.
“We have planning permission to add showers in one of the toilet blocks. We hope to raise sufficient funds, however, for now, cleaning is a significant expense and that has to take priority.”
Future plans include a payment barrier for the West Beach Car Park to ensure high standards and to contribute to ongoing maintenance.
Christine added: “We are very grateful for the financial support we have received towards this project. Our thanks go to Sue for officially opening the toilets and to the residents of the village who helped in the early days of the project with generous donations of toilet rolls.”
Visit Moray Speyside tourism project coordinator, Brooke Finnie, said the toilets refurbishment includes a disabled toilet, ensuring that clean, accessible facilities are available to all beach visitors.
She finished: “We are proud to have helped facilitate TFVCC through the funding process and encourage other communities to undertake Community Asset Transfers and apply for funding using the VMS Community Toilet Facilities Toolkit at https://morayspeyside.com/toilettoolkit/.”
For more information see https://www.findhornvillageconservation.org.uk/