By Jeremy Sollars
The State Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) has recommended against heritage listing of the toilet block behind the Warwick Town Hall.
The fate of the toilets has been hanging in the balance since the Southern Downs Regional Council voted earlier this year in favour of demolishing them, with mayor Tracy Dobie describing them as “unsafe” and “an eyesore”.
The council was later forced to apply to the department for approval for the demolition as it was discovered the toilets fall within the heritage “footprint” of the town hall, without being specifically named as a feature of the building.
The council withdrew the demolition application after the Southern Downs ‘RANGE’ resident’s action group applied to EHP to have the toilets specifically cited as part of the Town Hall’s State Heritage listing.
The decision by EHP – made on Thursday 3 August – will come as a blow to the RANGE group and many community members who believe the toilets both have heritage significance and are well-used by locals and the travelling public alike.
The final decision on heritage listing of the toilets will be made by the independent Queensland Heritage Council (QHC), expected at its next meeting on Thursday 24 August. The QHC will have the option of going against the EHP recommendation.
Comment is being sought from the Southern Downs Regional Council.