Superloo ‘love nest’ could be gifted to Oranmore

Cllr Shaun Cunniffe at the little used public toilet in Tuam. Photo: Johnny Ryan Photography.
Cllr Shaun Cunniffe at the little used public toilet in Tuam. Photo: Johnny Ryan Photography.

Tuam’s superloo – dubbed the town’s cut-price love nest because it’s used by canoodling couples – could be an early St Valentine’s day present for Oranmore.

County Councillor Donagh Killilea (FF) has proposed that Tuam Municipal District gift the public toilet at The Shambles car park in Tuam to the Oranmore/Athenry Municipal District.

His party colleague, Cllr Martina Kinnane, was looking for Galway County Council to provide a public toilet at Rinville Park in Oranmore and the people of Tuam were more than happy to oblige, he said.

Cllr Killilea said it has cost over €250,000 to maintain the loo in Tuam since it was installed over eleven years ago, at an initial installation cost of €500,000.

Nobody in Tuam wanted the toilet, nobody had asked for it, and Cllr Killilea claimed it was used just once every year.

“You’re welcome to it . . . take it . . . we don’t want it . . . it’s all yours,” said Cllr Killilea.

The Oranmore/Athenry Municipal District wasn’t flush with money and Cllr Frank Kearney (FG) queried whether the transfer of the loo to Rinville would have a cost implication for installing it and maintaining it.

Cathaoirleach Eileen Mannion (FG) said the matter should be discussed at Municipal District level in Tuam and not at the full Council meeting.

The toilet has had a chequered past. In its early years, the door swung open on a woman who was spending a penny inside.

It then became known as a love nest for couples, despite the fact that there was supposed to be a sensor in place to prevent two people entering at the one time.

The superloo became unpopular because it was allegedly taking money but not opening its doors and, one occasion, destroying a woman’s clothes when its cleaning jets went off at the wrong time.