Documentary photos of the ‘old’ toilet block

Funnily enough, out of the thousands of photos I’ve taken at Waikawa Beach — sunsets and sunrises, sandy vistas, birds, plants, dunes, Tararuas, fish, insects, lakes, river … — none feature the scuzzy old toilet block at Hank Edwards Reserve.

But that toilet block, built about 50 or 60 years ago is about to be irrevocably changed, so for the Waikawa Beach Archives I visited on 08 March 2022 and took a whole lot of photos, inside and out.

See these as a before. In a few months, Covid delays willing, we’ll be able to compare them with the after.

The old toilet block at Hank Edwards Reserve from across the road.
The old toilet block at Hank Edwards Reserve from across the road.

Warning: a lot of photos follow — beware data use.

Closer view, front, south end.
Closer view, front, south end. Note the AED and the boil water notice.
Closer view, front, north end.
Closer view, front, north end.
Front view, with tree and picnic tables.
Front view, with tree and picnic tables.
Front view with seat for those catching the schoolbus.
Front view with seat for those catching the schoolbus.
North end view. Note the cobbles and concrete path, and the aging iron roof.
North end view. Note the cobbles and concrete path, and the aging iron roof. Also spot the Covid social distancing sign. Another memorable feature is the ‘sunburst’ on the Men and Women sign.
End-on view from the north, showing the entrance on the reserve side.
End-on view from the north, showing the entrance on the Reserve side.
Closer view of the narrow entrance. Note the step. Not easy for a person wrangling a pushchair or several kids.
Closer view of the narrow entrance. Note the step. Not easy for a person wrangling a pushchair or several kids.
Looking into the womens section. Note the roof beams and narrow entrance.
Looking into the womens section. Note the roof beams and narrow entrance.
Toilet cubicle 'corridor' with sink. Floor stained from constantly overflowing toilets.
Toilet cubicle ‘corridor’ with sink. Floor stained from constantly overflowing toilets.
Toilet stall in womens area.
Toilet stall in womens area.
Changing room area in womens section.
Changing room area in womens section.
Womens changing room area, different view.
Womens changing room area, different view.
Courtyard area with outdoor shower.
Courtyard area with outdoor shower.
The mens urinal and basin. Plus a locked cupboard.
The mens urinal and basin. Plus a locked cupboard.
Mens toilet cubicle and basin.
Mens toilet cubicle and basin.
Mens changing room area.
Mens changing room area.
View from south end.
View from south end.

Note that the toilet block area also includes a septic tank and disposal field, a bore with water pump that serves the toilet block.

In addition the building is decaying, with holes in the roof, rust, cracked and broken concrete beams and other structural problems. Moreover it doesn’t meet modern standards for accessibility or ease of use.

It’s done a good 50 or 60 years service though and has been a huge relief for locals and visitors alike.

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Waikawa Beach or Manakau

New Zealand

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