• Tony Bosworth

Australia’s oldest public square turned into a toilet block - “piss poor event management”

Updated: Dec 24, 2021

It is only temporary – the 10 bright blue portaloos sitting on Thompson Square this evening will likely be gone by tomorrow - but their position on the circa-1795 square, and a perceived lack of respect for heritage, has annoyed many, who have taken to social media to complain.

The portaloos are there because Windsor has its popular Christmas Market on this evening until 9pm and Hawkesbury Council decided to plonk the loos on the grass.

“They need to be somewhere level and accessible,” newly re-elected Greens councillor Danielle Wheeler told the Post.

“We know toilets are a problem, but they would have been better placed in one of the closed streets out of the way, or even in the car park near the museum,” she said.

“Better the loss of a couple of car spaces than asking people to sit near the dunnies to eat their fish and chips."

“It just makes a mockery of the Square and everything the community fought for.”

The Councillor is talking about the decade-plus long fight by locals to keep iconic Thompson Square whole, rather than having it messed around with by Transport for NSW contractors when the new Windsor Bridge was put in and the old heritage bridge taken down.

“The loss of the significance of a place often happens as a series of cuts, not all of them deep,” said Cllr Wheeler on The Hawkesbury Greens Facebook page this evening.

“Here you see the oldest public square in Australia, Thompson Square circa 1795, the melding place of ancient and modern Australia, reduced to a toilet block. The disrespect continues.”

Others on social media were just as scathing of the decision.

“Piss poor. Very poor event management,” said one.

Another called it “a disgrace” with one commentator saying, “Disgusting! Put them elsewhere, not the park where people sit to eat fish & chips & view the river with social distancing. And they would stink.”

“This absolutely saddens me!” said another, who added, “Literally reducing our square for crap!”

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