A FIGHT to save under-offer public toilets in West Linton is under way.

Scottish Borders Council (SBC) revealed it had received a “very generous” bid to buy one of the village’s two conveniences.

West Linton residents are hoping to force the local authority to back up on its plan to sell.

But SBC said it was “keen to support this sale”, assuring that cash would be used to improve the remaining public loos in the village if the transaction goes through.

On Monday evening, West Linton Community Council (WLCC) chairman Mark McDavid said: “Every settlement should have one public toilet but it is not a statutory right.

“This whole process was set off by a member of the public who has expressed an interest, with a very generous offer, in buying one public toilet.”

WLCC member Doug Veitch said: “The toilet has to be offered to the (village) development trust.

“When it was built was it ever mentioned, in any way, there would be a chance to buy the toilet?”

WLCC member Lindsay Mann, speaking via Zoom, said: “Do we go back to SBC and say we don’t want either toilet to be sold.

“We should not be taking away something that is important to tourists.”

A member of the public, who used to clean the loos for many years, said that the toilet which is proposed to be kept often blocks up and can be closed for up to six weeks.

She added: “The toilet has disabled access and this could be lost to the village.”

Fellow member Angela Holliday said: “It is quite shocking of SBC, it sounds like this should not go ahead at all because we could end up with no working toilet.

“It is a dreadful way to treat West Linton, it’s disgraceful that it is even being considered.”

Ian Reid, commenting from the public seats, said: “Is it the same for any SBC infrastructure, say someone offered £1million for the school, would they sell that?

“It seems an immoral way to go about running public facilities.

“I am going to be asking our councillors to really keep pushing at saving them because it is in the best interest of the village.”

All public toilets closed in the Borders during the coronavirus pandemic.

Fourteen have not reopened, with the council stating that it had no plans to do so last year.

Following this week’s meeting, an SBC spokesperson said: “We have received an offer for the sale of one of the two public toilet facilities in West Linton.

“The council are keen to support this sale and are progressing a consultation with the local public on the proposal.

“The sale would see the council receiving funds which are intended to be reinvested into the council’s public toilet estate including enhancing the remaining facility in West Linton.

“The balance of proceeds would be targeted on other toilet facilities elsewhere in the Borders.

“As a council we need to strike the balance between being able to ensure the provision of public toilets is sustainable whilst also meeting the needs of local communities who use these facilities.

“This is not about removing or closing facilities but retaining and enhancing albeit with a smaller footprint.”