Toilets saved in Grangemouth’s Zetland Park
Councillors from all political parties agreed that they would not back plans to shut Zetland Park’s kiosk and toilets or reduce opening hours for Kinneil Museum in Bo’ness.
They said the suggestion to save £8000 a year by closing the park’s kiosk and toilets made no sense because the facilities will be replaced at no cost to the council when work starts on the town’s flood defences in two years time.
Many residents, including members of the Friends of Zetland Park, had been upset by the proposals which were revealed just weeks after £2 million funding was secured to transform the park.
As the councillors discussed this year’s budget for Falkirk Community Trust, Grangemouth Labour councillor Allyson Black asked colleagues to protect Zetland Park and Kinneil museum in Bo’ness.
She said taking options these off the table would set people’s minds at rest and her proposal was readily accepted by everyone.
SNP Grangemouth councillor David Balfour agreed that plans to close the toilets and kiosk did not make sense.
He explained: “There is soon to be £2 million of funding spent on park improvements including one of only three inclusive play parks in Scotland.
“This will attract people from all over Falkirk District and further afield. It is important to keep these facilities for very welcome visitors to Grangemouth.
The toilets will be upgraded so they offer disabled access.
Councillor Balfour added: “With the new inclusive playpark, it is welcome that we will also have inclusive facilities.”
The proposals were contained Falkirk Community Trust’s draft business plan, which has still to be finalised.
Councillors also agreed to maintain opening hours at Kinneil Museum, after a suggestion it should reduce its opening hours to save around £3000.
Mrs Black said the museum contained Kinneil Estate’s only toilet and it would not be fair to the community to close it.
While no decision would have been taken before the budget meeting in February, Mrs Black said she wanted it made clear these services would not be changing.