I have lived in many places around the world but I am proud to call London my home. I see such vitality and growth here and therefore feel that one issue which has received little attention but which affects the lives of half of your citizens on a daily basis could maybe warrant your attention; the issue women have with the lack of convenient conveniences. As a man this is a concern for me – I love the inclusivity of London but I am concerned that we could do more for women to have the same, real, opportunities as men.
The space of a mens toilet is more useable since men use urinals which are more space efficient than stalls and this often leads to longer queues for women who are thus not able to access a toilet as quickly and men. This results in a constriction of movement for women, particularly professional women, who will not be able to hop around town as easily or as carefree as men.
However, in places with shared stalls the experience should be equalised but some men do not understand the concept of lifting the toilet seat and this results in urine splash onto the seat which of course is off-putting for women who need to sit and for men when they also need to sit, as well as for other men.
My suggestion/invention is simply this:
• Make a toilet seat which is actively hinged in the ‘up’ position which can easily be moved down (like some of the seats on the tube) when they are needed (maybe with a lever on the side sticking out a bit for extra hygiene) – so that the toilet seat is always in the ‘up’ position when not in use and easily in the ‘down’ position when needed.
This would result in significantly less or no spillage from careless men and would make the experience for women markedly better, more hygienic and more more convenient, with a particular benefit for professional women who would not longer need to be concerned about finding a useable and timely toilet since this would open up the opportunity to many more shared sex toilets and therefore would even the practicality for men and women to find a timely toilet between meetings.
Luxury options could of course include sensors and actuators for a hands-free experience.
I am sending this to you since London could legislate or even simply recommend such an addition to public toilets. I have no commercial interest in this invention.
Best Regards, from a Norwegian Londoner who is proud to call this city his home,