Changing Places Toilets

One of my accessibility quests is to raise awareness about the lack of truly accessible toilets.  For many people, who use large electric wheelchairs, need assistance from carers, need the use of a hoist and/or need to be able to lie down to have an incontinence pad changed, the standard ‘unisex accessible WC’ in the building regulations is just NOT accessible.

Hand drawn sketch plan of a unisex accessible WC

Since 2009 there has been guidance in the British Standards (BS 8300) for the best practice fully accessible toilets – changing places – and recommendation as to which buildings they should be installed in.

Young girl in a wheelchair next to a changing bench with a navy changing mat laid out
Girl in a wheelchair next to a changing bench in a changing places toilet

Thanks to a long campaign by disabled people and access organisations, this summer (2020) there has been a huge step forward in the campaign, when it was announced that changing places toilets will become a requirement in building regulations in England for new buildings over a certain size threshold! The new legislation came into effect in January 2021.

You can read my blog posts on accessible toilets here.