Urinals

Pottergate

January 8th 1891

The Surveyor reported that four tenders had been received for the removal of existing urinals to other parts of the town, and the erection of two new ones at the Fish Market, and near the passenger approach to the Railway Station. The Streets Committee recommended acceptance of Messrs. T. H. Hindmmarsh and Son’s tender of £41, being the lowest. Agreed to.

May 9th 1891

The Alnwick Local Board have erected a public convenience at the entrance to the Railway Station on the South Road, which was condemned by a majority of the “new blood” infused into the Board, on Wednesday. The situation could be improved certainly, but it was the best site in that portion of the town that the Board could obtain. The Greenbat convenience is also to be considered a nuisance, and the Streets Committee have got to consider more suitable sites. Necessity’s law is considered in towns of greater importance than Alnwick, and palpably discovered, and it is obvious that it must be acknowledged in the ducal town as elsewhere, and that the Local Board must take what sites they can get, no matter how obnoxious the erections may appear to the delicate taste interested individuals.

June 11th 1898

The Clerk read a letter from Mr. W. T. Hindmarsh, clerk to the Common Council of the Borough of Alnwick, asking the Urban Council to remove the offensive urinal at the Town Hall. Mr. Adam Douglas moved, and Dr. B. B. Robson seconded, that such should be done. Mr. E. Conway agreed that it was anything but a credit to the town, but pointed out that the one in the Market Place, and the one at the railway station (which he might say was out of the town) would be the only ones remaining. Considered that before they proceeded to take this one down at the Town Hall, there should a new one put-up. There was a great necessity for more of them, in the direction of Pottergate and Bailiffgate. Eventually the motion was carried, and Mr. E. Conway moved that the Streets Committee be instructed to look round and fix upon suitable sites whereon to erect a sufficient number of these commodities.—Mr. Adam Douglas seconded the motion, which was also agreed to.

July 8th 1899

With respect to the public urinal which had been erected immediately behind a drinking fountain in Pottergate Street, the Committee reported that they considered the Clerk should send a letter in reply informing the Local Government Board of the position in which the Council stood with regard this erection. There were only two of these conveniences for the whole town (one at the Railway Station and one in the Market Place), and from the nature of the town there were very few suitable places for these erections. The memorialists against the present erection had been well acquainted with the facts, through the local newspaper reports, of the Council’s intentions, and that they had never raised a cry until it was erected, notwithstanding that deliberations had been going on for months. —Mr. John Davison (Hotspur) asked that when the Clerk wrote that he would explain also that there was no danger whatever of the water supply becoming contaminated through the erection of the convenience so near it. The Committee fixed the erection there being the most suitable place they could find, and in the line of traffic, well as out of the way. The building was nearly complete when the memorial was received.—lt was agreed to leave the question of replying to the Local Government Board in the hands of the Clerk.

November 9th 1901

With regard to the Pottergate urinal it was agreed that the wings of the screen be extended 15 inches.

October 10th 1903

A letter of complaint was received of boys damaging the pant in Pottergate, of water being run to waste, also of the unsightly structure being placed behind it – a public urinal. It was resolved that the letter be referred to the sanitary committee

October 5th 1912

A petition signed by 36 inhabitants in the neighbourhood of Pottergate, etc., again appealing to the Council to have the most objectionable urinal which is fixed the back of the Pant or Drinking Fountain, removed. They considered it disgusting to have it placed in such position, especially as the inhabitants so frequently made use of the water of the fountain for drinking purposes. They need not remind the Council that previous similar petitions had been laid before the Local Government Board, who strongly suggested the Council its immediate removal. It was no excuse to postpone this matter until another urinal was erected, nuisance like that should removed a once. Mr, Weston said that similar objections had been received some time ago, with which he had great sympathy. There was, however, a wider question, and that was where were they were to find suitable situations for them. The one in Pottergate ought never to have been placed where it was. Mr. Frater: I have always had objection it, and will move that it be removed forthwith. Mr. Ralph Henderson seconded the motion. Mr. W. Bell said the erection was an absolute nuisance, but we must not cast reflections upon those who were responsible for putting it there, and would support the motion that it be removed forthwith. Mr. Turnbull: The Committee should consider at the same time where one could be best placed. Mr. Lingwood said Alnwick was very badly off for public conveniences. He had been in a great many towns both in Scotland and England, and had not found one badly circumstanced as Alnwick. This question had been before the Council three or four years, and there was some talk about putting a certain sum of money away for provision such erections. In other and larger towns they were in the middle of the market place. With small ornamental trees on the top, as in other towns, there would be no objections. In Alnwick there was no place between the Railway Station and Pottergate. They wanted Alnwick to be a holiday centre, and they must provide for it. The motion was put to the meeting and carried unanimously, and it was further agreed that the committee enquire into the provision of suitable accommodation in the town.

November 9th 1912

Meeting of Urban district Council: the urinal in Pottergate had been removed, and the committee would take up the question of provision of such accommodation about the town.

November 12th 1912

“Sir, in this week’s Gazette I see in the Alnwick Urban Districut Council notes that that they have demolished the urinal situated at the foot of Pottergate Street and that they have not settled on another suitable place for erecting the same. Might I suggest Bondgate Hill as a good spot for it, and if the expense is not objected to, make an underground one”.

Ordnance Survey (revised 1921)

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