Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities
Thousands of lives improved with 120 Changing Places toilets
The lives of thousands of severely disabled people across England will be enhanced by 120 new changing facilities.
Severely disabled people will benefit from better facilities and greater accessibility in their local areas as councils across England received their share of over £7m government funding to build Changing Places toilets.
Designed for those who struggle to use standard accessible toilets, these new state-of-the-art facilities come with additional equipment such as hoists, adult sized changing benches and space for carers. They are targeted at areas where they are most needed such as parks, shopping centres and train stations with little to no access facilities.
This announcement brings the amount of funding awarded under the government’s Changing Places scheme to £30.5 million. The scheme is providing more than 600 new facilities, bringing the total of Changing Places toilets across England to 1,900.
Levelling Up Minister Dehenna Davison, said:
“Everyone deserves to have the freedom to enjoy their local communities – without the fear of whether or not they’re going to be able to access the facilities they need.
“This funding will see 120 new Changing Places toilets in places where they are most needed, helping ensure disabled people and their carers can go about their lives with dignity.”
Robert Burley, Director of Director of Care, Campaigns, and Support at Muscular Dystrophy UK (MDUK) said:
“We’re very pleased that the remaining balance from this fund has been allocated. This is a wonderful outcome and will see increased provision of Changing Places toilets in the areas most in need.
“MDUK is extremely proud to be supporting this vital programme, and we look forward to providing our continued specialist support to both the Department and to Local Authorities through to its conclusion; and to the increased inclusion this funding will facilitate across England.”
Shelley Simmonds is a campaigner and advocate for MDUK as her son, Fraser, 9, lives with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a condition which causes muscles to weaken over time.
“I am a delighted to hear the announcement and I know I speak for many families like mine when I say that Changing Places really do change lives. The freedom of being able to visit different places and have days out that we can thoroughly enjoy, without the worry of toilet uncertainty or having to cut our trips shorts, is a wonderful feeling!
“Not being able to access a suitable toilet dictates our everyday life and prevents us from even accessing our most local community. With more Changing Places popping up, families can explore places that were once off limits.”
In a study by the Research Institute for Disabled Consumers in 2021, Commissioned by Muscular Dystrophy UK and DLUHC, families and carers said the top locations where these facilities should be made available were country parks, open spaces, tourist attractions and transport networks, as the journey to the destination is a key factor in planning a day out. The top venues were beaches and the seaside, motorway services and parks or gardens.
New facilities will now be built in the following venues:
- Public parks and open spaces
- Tourist attractions including historic properties, seaside resorts and zoos
- Museums, theatres, and galleries
- Shopping malls
- Libraries and public buildings
Changing Places Fund Round 2 Allocations
- Barnet London Borough
- Bath and North East Somerset Council
- Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council
- Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council
- Breckland District Council
- Brent London Borough
- Bromley London Borough
- Central Bedfordshire UA
- Copeland Borough Council
- Coventry City Council
- Darlington Borough Council
- Dorset Council (UA)
- Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council
- Durham County UA
- East Cambridgeshire District Council
- Eden District Council
- Folkestone and Hythe District Council
- Gedling Borough Council
- Great Yarmouth Borough Council
- Greenwich London Borough
- Hammersmith and Fulham London Borough
- Harborough District Council
- Havant Borough Council
- Havering London Borough
- Herefordshire Council
- High Peak Borough Council
- Huntingdonshire District Council
- King’s Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council
- Kirklees Council
- Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council
- Maidstone Borough Council
- Malvern Hills District Council
- Mansfield District Council
- Mid Devon District Council
- Mole Valley District Council
- North Tyneside Council
- North West Leicestershire District Council
- Northumberland County UA
- Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council
- Peterborough City Council
- Plymouth City Council
- Portsmouth City Council
- Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council
- Redditch Borough Council
- Reigate and Banstead Borough Council
- Ribble Valley Borough Council
- Rother District Council
- Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council
- Rushcliffe Borough Council
- Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council
- Sheffield City Council
- South Holland District Council
- South Oxfordshire District Council
- South Tyneside Council
- Southend-on-Sea Borough Council
- Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council
- Stratford-on-Avon District Council
- Test Valley Borough Council
- Tewkesbury Borough Council
- Waltham Forest London Borough
- Wealden District Council
- West Lancashire Borough Council
- Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council
- Wirral Borough Council
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