A RARELY-used public toilet in Billericay, which is losing more than £19,000 a year, won’t have the chain pulled on its contract, despite pleas from a former town councillor.

Terry Gandy is incensed Billericay Town Council is paying out £20,000 a year for the automatic toilet, situated in a car park behind Iceland, which only an average of eight people use each day – generating just £655 a year.

The toilet was installed seven years ago, after councillors voted to enter into a 15-year lease with toilet company, Healthmatic, which owns the toilet.

Mr Gandy of Norsey View Drive says the council acted too hastily in signing a lease for such a lengthy period.

He added: “The council said at the time the people of Billericay wanted a public toilet, but they didn’t want an automatic toilet.

They wanted a proper town toilet, like the one that used to be in the Waitrose car park.”

If the council pulls out of the lease now there will be a penalty of around £50,000, but Mr Gandy believes the saving of £112,000 would be worth it.

Councillor John Buchanan, chairman of Billericay Town Council, said: “The town council is committed to providing this service 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to the residents and visitors of Billericay and has no intention of withdrawing it.

“Only one person in Billericay has ever objected to the provision of this facility. More than 3,000 people use it every year. Those statistics speak for themselves.”