Changing Places to make journeys better
OTO, the UK's biggest provider of motorway services, is helping lead the way in the drive for inclusivity, with the opening of the first 'Changing Places' specialist accessible toilet on the motorway network.
The facility has been supplied by leading disabled toilet provider and sponsor of the Changing Places campaign Total Hygiene, for main contractor Galliford Try, at Cherwell Valley Services on the M40 in Oxfordshire, which has been rebuilt following a fire in 2010.
The development marks a milestone in Moto's commitment to making its customers' journeys better, with Cherwell Valley having all its facilities on one level, in a larger, brighter, spacious layout featuring an open plan seating area, and catering and retail units towards the rear to facilitate 'traffic' flow.
The Changing Places toilet aims to provide appropriate facilities for people who need the help of at least one carer. Larger than conventional accessible toilet, it includes a hoist, changing bench, and height adjustable washbasin. Moto has further included a peninsular Closomat Palma 'wash and dry' toilet; looking like a traditional WC, the Closomat has integral douche and drying facilities, eliminating the need to wipe clean after toileting, helping improve hygiene, privacy and dignity for the user. The 4.2m x 3m toilet has been strategically sited just ahead of the main toilets, and restaurant and seating area, to further enhance accessibility by users.
Explained David Stepney, Moto project manager, "We took the decision to install a Changing Places toilet following discussion with interested parties, and what we felt was a real need to provide additional facilities other than the traditional 'disabled toilet', for those who are able to travel but need the help and assistance of others."
Adds Robin Tuffley, Total Hygiene marketing manager, "Since the concept of Changing Places toilets was born, more than 300 have been installed across the UK, as specifiers and consumers appreciate the impact they have on life for the millions of people with profound and multiple disabilities, enabling them to participate more fully in life, knowing there are appropriate toilets when they are 'out and about'. We visit the toilet on average eight times a day, so access to suitable facilities is a major factor for a large proportion of our population. Further, under latest British Standards, it is 'good practice' in any large new build or refurbishment to which the public have access to include a Changing Places toilet."