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Campaign for more public toilets in Brick Lane to stop "urinating on homes"

PUBLISHED: 18:00 12 October 2011

Chris Smith and Green Party London Assembley member Jenny Jones are campaigning over the lack of toilet provision on Brick Lane

Chris Smith and Green Party London Assembley member Jenny Jones are campaigning over the lack of toilet provision on Brick Lane

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A campaign for more public toilets in Brick Lane has been started by a group which says the street is being blighted by drunken partygoers urinating on homes.

Chris Smith, a Green Party candidate for next year’s London Assembly elections, said he gets constant complaints from tenants and homeowners over the lack of facilities in the tourist hotspot.

His group is now leafleting thousands of homes to drum up support for a petition for more council-run loos.

There are currently two portable toilets in the vicinity but the Greens are suggesting the council looks at temporary toilets - common in the West End - which are discreetly stored.

Ben Hancocks, who lives in Padbury Court, in the north of Brick Lane, said: “There’s no provision of public toilets near where I live. It always has been a problem but at the weekend it’s worse.”

Mr Smith said: “The council can’t be bothered to put proper toilets in one of the most popular tourist attractions in London. We’re less than a year away from the Olympics when this area will be far busier.”

The council said it is considering a scheme where restaurants, cafes and libraries agree to let visitors use their toilets.

A spokeswoman added: “The council’s current financial position would make this aspiration a challenge and may take at least 12 months to implement.”

Meanwhile, traffic congestion and a lack of rubbish and recycling facilities also issues for residents, the Greens say.

A confusing system is in place on Sundays which block off the north side of Brick Lane to traffic but allows vehicles to enter from the south.

Mr Smith added: “Tourists are required to dodge cars at peak times. Drivers are not informed when they enter that the north section is closed. This causes continuous chaos.”

In the past there has been much support among Brick Lane restaurants to pedestrianised the street.

“Major improvements” are in the pipeline, the council said.

These include resurfacing the road, using barriers to close large sections off to traffic and more signs.

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