Shoppers in Borehamwood are still waiting for toilet facilities in Shenley Road, 18 months after the idea was first proposed.

At a meeting of Hertsmere Borough Council last Wednesday, Councillor Di Hoeksma, who first suggested the Community Toilet Scheme in January last year, asked why the idea was taking so long to start.

Under the scheme, shopkeepers would volunteer to allow people to use their toilets, regardless of whether they are customers, in return for an annual fee from the council.

But despite councillors unanimously approving a year-long trial in May, it is unlikely the scheme will begin until September.

Addressing the full council meeting, councillor Jean Heywood, environment portfolio holder, said officers had met with council members from the London borough of Waltham Forest, which operates a similar policy.

She said: "A draft timetable is being discussed, which will see the scheme launched in Borehamwood in Sep- tember. This allows time for preparation of legal documents, criteria and publicity material."

Speaking after the meeting, Mrs Hoeksma said: "It seems to have gone on and on. Until I have actually seen something happening I am going to be a bit cynical. The scheme is much cheaper than public toilets, which cost a lot to maintain and nobody uses them.

"A lot of people want to see this scheme introduced and I will keep on chasing the issue. If we don't even have a start date by September I will be asking questions again."

The draft project will cost about £40,000 and be funded by the council's business growth incentive scheme.