confusing: the new 'ambulant' public toilets in Winchcombe
BAFFLING new signs on a public toilet in Winchcombe have left townspeople scratching their heads.
The signs, which advertise an Ambulant Urinal and Unisex Ambulant facility, have attracted puzzled looks from passers-by – and been panned by a plain English campaign group.
The signs are positioned on the toilets in Back Lane, which have been undergoing refurbishment.
Barbara Heard, from Gretton Road, Winchcombe, said she failed to understand how the signs could have been sanctioned by Tewkesbury Borough Council.
She said: "Does anyone have any idea what these signs mean?
"My husband and I regard ourselves as fairly intelligent but we have no idea.
"What will our overseas visitors will make of these signs?
"Is this political correctness gone mad?"
The Ambulant Urinal sign is accompanied by a picture of a man holding two sticks.
But the Unisex Ambulant picture simply shows a male and female image.
The Plain English Campaign is demanding the signs be taken down and flushed away for good.
Spokesman Marie Clair said: "This could be a contender for our annual awards.
"What on earth is an ambulant urinal? When did we stop calling a loo a loo?
"We work with a lot of councils around the country to cut down on jargon but Tewkesbury is not one of them.
"We will be getting in touch with the authority to see if there are ways we could work together to help them clarify their messages to the public.
"It's great that the council are making these provisions.
"But surely people can work out which little room they need – as long as they know it is actually a toilet.
"Legs crossed – they will use plain common sense and plain English in the future."
Chris Pike, head of commercial services at Tewkesbury Borough Council, said: "The slightly confusing wording on the new toilets has been brought to our attention and the architects have been asked to change it.
"The ambulant units are larger than the standard ones and are fitted with some disability aids.
"They are intended for people who may be partially disabled but cannot access the full disabled unit."
■ According to the dictionary, the definition of ambulant is:
1: able to walk about; not confined to bed;
2: not confining a patient to bed