£15 million boost means toilet charge at Leeds train station to be abolished.
by Shaun Turner and Eliza Laben
The Leeds station toilets, which currently charge 40p, will be free to use from Monday 17th December.
This is the first change to be made after a £15 million funding package was announced by Rail Minister, Andrew Jones. The charge was set to be dropped in April next year, however the extra funding has meant it can be brought forward.
Joanne Parker, Network Rail Communications Executive stated; “We’ve got this unexpected £15 million made available to use across the North of England so that gave us an extra injection of cash. We were looking at what we could do for passengers which we could introduce as quickly as possible.”
Many commuters in Leeds have taken to social media to complain about the charge: “It’s 40p for a wee in Leeds station, and the toilets aren’t even made of gold”, @JoeDonovan92.
Martin Frobisher, Network Rails Managing Director, described the plans as “a long overdue Christmas present for passengers in the north.”
Joanne Parker also explained; “We planned to scrap the charges on the toilets at Leeds from April 2019 when the next tranche of money was available to Network Rail but the extra money has allowed us to bring this forward.”
“We do not profit from these charges. The small charge we make for using the toilets helps to maintain them and prevents misuse such as vandalism and other anti-social behaviour. Any money raised from the charges is reinvested into the railway and passenger facilities at our stations.”
Leeds Station toilets have made £544,976 over the past 3 financial years, which is invested in to the stations facilities.
Manchester Piccadilly and Liverpool Lime Street are also amongst the stations which will be benefiting from the changes.