Friday, 29 July 2011

The Friday Flush

For today's Friday Flush we are visiting the toilets on the top floor of the Army and Navy department store in Exeter.

Time of visit: Monday 25th July 2011, 12.20pm. Weather conditions: Sunny and warm.

This is a thriving toileting facility within the heart of Exeter; it has a light, bright, congenial atmosphere conducive for a good toileting experience, although it is somewhat let down by the decor, which is drab, tatty and hints at mould growing on the window frames.
This facility is popular with ladies who lunch/shop/work/watch Coronation Street and like ice cream. The average age of users is between 12 and 76. This facility is also popular with women who like sandwiches and bakery products bought from the adjoining Army and Navy Cafeteria. Toileting is free although cakes cost extra.
Due to the popularity of this venue it was difficult for me to take photographs of the public area or the hand washing/drying facilities without drawing attention to myself. My furtive activities were further hindered by the janitor [a man], who was mopping the floor.

There were approximately six cubicles for private toileting. I am under 5ft and weigh 7 stone but I found the cubicle to be a little narrow.


As you can see from the above photograph this cubicle has been used by too many short women with pointy elbows who have caused the toilet roll dispenser to be displaced.


The lock on the door worked, but was less than attractive.


Unfortunately it took several attempts to flush this loo properly.

General Overview: I found these toileting facilities to be of a basic standard for the UK. Overall they were clean and smelt pleasant due to the abundance of aroma sticks artfully arranged in small vases by each sink. Water came out of the taps when operated, which was neither too hot, cold or warm. Soap was provided. The auto hand-dryer was adequate if a little antiquated and did not double up as a hair dryer. There was a wall mounted baby changing table which was dusty from lack of use.
Would I visit again? Yes, due its proximity to the Clinique and Estee Lauder beauty counters on the ground floor.

Overall score: 5/10  Basic facilities.

56 comments:

  1. This facility is popular with ladies who lunch/shop/work/watch Coronation Street

    That’s me!

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  2. Hello Miss Scarlet:
    Happy Friday!

    Well, in our view, and not wishing to upset any of your regular readers, the Army and Navy stores have never been the same since the House of Fraser takeover. And, at the risk of upsetting your Nordic clientele, the downhill slide was complete with the Icelandic acquisition in the early years of this century.

    The loo you show today is testament we feel to this appalling drop in standards. Indeed, the lock situation alone is completely unacceptable. Like you, unless conveniently situated [!!], we should not touch these lavatory facilities with a bargepole. A begrudging 4/10 from us, but only because we too are Clinique aficionados!!

    Wishing you a lovely weekend.

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  3. If only all public loos reached that 'not great' standard.
    Apart from wobbley seats - I eschew sitting on pulic loos - my other pet hate is having to do upper body gynnastics to reach the toilet paper and then to find the end to tear it off.
    There have been times- at the theatre, with tiny cloakrooms and a queue standing by the door when I have given up,crossed my legs thankful for a good strong bladder.

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  4. @Pat: The trick is to tear off as much tissue as you think you'll need BEFORE you get down to business.

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  5. There was a young lady from Exeter.
    All the young men threw their sex at her.
    Just to be rude,
    She lay in-the-nude.
    While her parrot, a pervert, took pecks at her.


    Sorry.

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  6. I'm impressed that they provide a loo brush. Is that so you can clean your own bowl? How considerate....

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  7. MJ: And me!!!

    The Top Hats: Good heavens, I am so tired that I nearly re-nick-named you as the Tap Hots... which would be quite fitting for this post!
    But you are correct, this is the standard we have come to expect from our public facilities and it is indeed a low standard. But, at least they were clean. The worst toilet that I can recall using, was on a train... needs must etc... thankfully I was quite drunk.

    Pat: Oh Pat, you are lucky, when I need to go, then I need to go.
    Loos in theatres are the nearly as bad as trains but for different reasons. In the theatre there is usually only one cubicle per 100 women. A lot of uncomfortable wriggling goes on in those queues.

    MJ: I have also noted down your tip. Why didn't I think of that?!

    Mr Lax: Thankfully the toileting facilities in the Army and Navy store are parrot free.

    Princess: I doubt if anybody ever uses them!!

    Sx

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  8. When I Die I Hope The Toilets In Heaven Are Like THIS!.
    [I Kid You Not, They Even Give Guided Tours Of The Gents for Wimmin!!!!]

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  9. Tony: I will be sending this link to the Army and Navy store in Exeter in the hope that it will inspire then to up their game. I'm sure the shop staff will be more than happy to stay late and make merry with some creative tiling.
    Meanwhile I am planning my journey to Liverpool.
    Sx

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  10. Bleurghh I bet they smell like the toilets in Debenhams, Princes Street. There's always an old lady pee smell in there, though they keep the windows open all the time.

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  11. I have never used the store, let alone its bog. Being a peace lover, I have little call for an army, and being some 20 miles inland, no need for a navy.

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  12. I laughed when you mentioned the weather conditions.

    I may also abscond with the phrase "conducive for a good toileting experience", perhaps in time for use at the serving gig with Mary tonight.

    I shall, of course, be discreet. (It'll knock Mary off her feet, I just know it.)

    Pearl

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  13. Macy: Surprisingly enough they didn't smell of old lady wee! The aromatic sticks seemed to keep all nasty niffs at bay. Although the windows were open.

    Mr Scurrilous: Are you saying that you've never had any need for the Estee Lauder or a Clinique beauty counter?

    Pearl: I look forward to Mary's response!
    Have a good weekend!

    Sx

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  14. Hmm. Sorry to disagree with Ix, but the version my dear old ma taught me was

    There was a young lady from Exeter
    So fair that men all craned their necks at her;
    Till one fellow, more brave,
    Proceeded to wave
    The distinguishing mark of his sex at her


    though I'm sure that rarely happens to a rafeened lady such as yourself, Ms S.

    WV is dinger, which seems oddly appropriate, though I can't work out how for the moment.

    PS. Try the Ladies in the Knights Templar pub in Chancery Lane some time.

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  15. Mr Auty: Goodness! My mother was neglectful of her duty to teach me either version of the rhyme. I was taught: On Mother Kelly's Doorstep and There's A Hole in My Pocket... and I was thankful for that.
    Thank you for your toilet tip, Mr Auty, I will have to make some time for a toilet tour of London... but will obviosly have to save up my pennies.
    I agree, Dinger is oddly appropriate and apparently something to do with home runs.
    Best not to have them when you're out.

    Sx

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  16. Where is Dave??????
    Dear Dave, I am logging off now and I hope that you enjoy today's Friday Flush.
    Sx

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  17. I am sorry. I have been out all day attending to a woman's needs.

    She needed her wall mending.

    I am back now.

    Under 5'? I'm sure that must come in handy at times.

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  18. So you sound about the same size and height as Kylie? Were you singing "Spinning around" as you flushed?

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  19. Under 5ft tall yet it took you several attempts to flush your own log... what have you been eating?

    The thing about women is that you are all just smoke and mirrors, underneath you are no different to men.

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  20. You'll be relieved to know (snigger) that the men's facilities at The Army & Navy are at least as bad, or worse. The key thing is that they are reachable by a back stair so that the desperate male can avoid the "we know where you're going" look from the Estee Lauder girls............

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  22. I'd be wary about parking my bottom on that, One might catch the crabs. I hate using public toilets, especially abroad, in Spain and Greece they have a separate bin for your used paper! I suppose it comes in handy if there isn't any toilet roll left, you could always fish around in the bin for a cleanish sheet to use.

    If you ever find yourself in York Scarlet, you'd be advised to stay away from the Parliament Street public toilets, they're an absolute disgrace, stainless steel bowl affairs with no toilet seat! Can you imagine that? it's like pissing into a bucket, and of course, there is never any hot water in those places. Thank Goodness for alco gel. The above mentioned facility is popular with people who wear shoddy fabrics/drop their H's/use the glottal stop and watch the Jeremy Kyle show/appear on the Jeremy Kyle show.

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  23. Sic transit gloria mundi. The Army and Navy always had standards - its Headquarters in Victoria Street was a place where a Gentlewoman could purchase a proper Windsmoor overcoat, or even a good Burberry Gabardine suit before setting off for places of inclement weather, like Scotland.

    I am not surprised at your findings - they match the declining standards of The Lady, and the mores of its vulgar, self-seeking Editor, Rachel Johnson.

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  24. Dave: Being under five foot is extremely handy. Not so good for seeing over high Devon hedges though.

    Mr Joey: Yes, I am the same size as Kyle... but she has much better legs! And a much better voice.

    Mr Jimmy: Thank you for updating your blogroll!!!
    I have been been quite swept away with the line: Desiccated, middle-aged women with nail-bag voices, slosh on tans and waspish outfits...
    So at the moment will forgive you anything and will agree with anything you say!

    Affer: Hello and Welcome!!
    The ladies on the beauty counters are all knowing.

    Mitzi: The Greeks are having a bit of a financial crisis at the moment, so I will forgive them the toilet paper recycling project. And make a note to take my own rolls if I ever visit.

    The stainless steels bowls of he Parliament Street public toilets bring to mind the toilets in Lloyd's of London. I don't recall the bowls but the cubicle doors were anti-grafitti - pitted steel, glazed with what felt like a coating of baby oil. I used to just stand and stroke them.

    Sx

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  25. Ms Jessop: I feel that declining standards are rife in all areas of society because the majority of us have to huddle in sub-standard cagoules and acrylic jumpers. Man-made fibres have a lot to answer for.
    I am waiting for the day when The Lady is merged with Heat Magazine and the Heated Lady hits our shelves; short stories of love and romance penned by Kerry Katona will feature.

    Sx

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  26. I'm straining to think of something interesting or humorous to say, but absolutely nothing's coming out. I think I must be constipated.

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  27. Nick: Here, park yourself down on a stool until you feel better.
    Sx

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  28. Does being a member of the BLue Club bring other benefits, like free public transport or something?

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  29. What? No hairdryer? Unacceptable

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  30. It's Sunday. I'm late to the party yet again.

    My apologies.

    I will remember to play next week Friday.

    As for a comment for this week's post. I think you were a bit harsh in your scoring. They hit the basic points after all.

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  31. Mr Mags: You will have to wait and see what the benefits of being a Blue Club member turn out to be!

    Ms Nurse: Totally unacceptable!!

    Miss Roses: Harsh but fair!
    Why use the word 'marvellous' when 'mediocre' will suffice?

    Sx

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  32. Will you come and report on the facilities available in our cricket pavillion?

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  33. That's a good idea Dave! I have now got a folder of toilet related posts... but I think I should only do a toilet post once a fortnight. I don't want this blog turning into a cess-pit!
    Sx

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  34. I was going to mention that you don't only have to post about toilets. We do miss your investigations into all areas of life.

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  35. I'm shocked. Normally the higher-up the facilities the better quality and maintained. I'd expect this sort of lack of attention to detail from a baseroom level facility. I do hope there's an alternative within reasonable emergency shuffle distances....

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  36. Is this a DIY toilet? What's the loo brush doing there?

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  37. Did you purchase anything fun, like a Ghillie Suit?

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  38. Did you have a bad day yesterday? We missed you on the wonderful world of the internet.

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  39. Dropping by to say Hello Ms S

    What Nuggets you reveal: goes once a week, under 5 foot ...
    considering 'those (famous) jeans', you're small but perfectly formed.

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  40. Dave: Like a hole in the head!

    Wendy: There is indeed a very well maintained facility next door to the store... but you have to pay 20p to spend a penny.

    Ms Laffy Roar: Hello and Welcome!!
    Yes... you have to clean the loo yourself if anything gets stuck. I decided against inspecting this brush for cleanliness.

    Mr XL: x2 I am going wrap myself up in both [of] your suggestions. Thank you.

    Dave: Pffft...

    Mr Kevin: Hello Mr Kevin... thank you, you are most generous.
    I am thinking of doing a series entitled 'Bottom Thursdays' to find out which of the many outfits in my wardrobe suits my bottom best.

    Sx

    I am now out of service due to high maintenance works and no change will be given for anything pushed into my slot.
    I am also finding it impossible to comment on Mr Chairman's and Ms Norma's blog posts.
    Ms Norma has some gorgeous pics of Corgi puppies. Just thought I'd say.

    Sxxxxxx

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  41. Am really worried now that it was something I said. xx

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  42. Tsk.Mr David: I am hormonally challenged. I will be back when I am feeling a little less mental.
    Sx

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  43. I'll send LX over to fluff your pillows.

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  44. Thank you Mistress MJ. I am already huddled in the costumes that Mr Lax has so kindly provided. Fluffing would also be appreciated.
    Sx

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  45. He has that lovely new coffin we can recline in when we're feeling poorly.

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  46. [fluffs pillows]

    Please, no cracker eating in the coffin as it is difficult to get the crumbs out of the tufts.

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  47. Mr XL and MJ: I'm going to buried with a platter of fairy cakes... just in case...
    Sx

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  48. Let me kiss you, somewhere under this bloody mess a lovely mouth is to be found ...

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  49. This area is clearly very forward thinking with its facilities.
    Tell me did it have the little bar of ( what once was ) white soap by the porcelain dripping basin. If not the score should be somewhat reduced.

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  50. mmm they weren't like that when I was a lad...

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  51. Mr Mags: That seems to have worked!

    Kerry: There was a pumping facility - always very handy.

    Nota Bene: Ha - were you dragged into the Ladies by your mother when you were a boy?
    Were the loss better back then, I can't seem to remember....

    Sx

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  52. Nick has a valid point - straining, heaving and complaining should all be part of the no.2 testing regime for seat integrity and safety.

    If a similar issue emerges during a no 1 test then Lord 'elp you.

    xs N

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  53. Mr Nikos: As a rule I am not performing any No. 2 tests publically. I just thought I ought to make that clear.

    Sx

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  54. Good heavens! I seem to have made more typos on this post than Jordan makes on her short terse notes to her milkman. Apologies.

    *pulicly* not publically!

    *loos* not loss

    It's all about pubic loss, perhaps... it'll be pubic perms next... you mark my words... actually, don't mark them, not unless you've got a nice yellow highlighting pen that is compatible with your computer screen.

    Sx

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  55. ...Jesus, I am even incapable of correcting my typos.
    PUBLICLY... obviously I have a problem with this word....
    Sx

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