IF you plan to use the so-called public toilets in Valentine's main street, you might want to bring along your own toilet paper, a torch and a toilet seat.
A 10-year stalemate between Lake Macquarie City Council and owners of the privately-owned local hall have left residents with little option in case of a bladder emergency.
Lake Macquarie City Council has been cleaning and maintaining behind Valentine Progress Association Hall for about 10 years, three times a week.
But the hall, along with the toilet block behind it, is in a derelict state.
Valentine residents have been fighting the council to build its own toilets in the adjacent Allambee Park for close to a decade, with little success.
Lake Macquarie councillor Kay Fraser said the issue was first raised by the then-mayor John Kilpatrick in 2002.
"The toilets are in a dreadful state - there's no lights, and no seats on the toilets - it's disgraceful," Cr Fraser said.
"I wouldn't use them and I wouldn't let my children use them.
"I think the council has a responsibility to provide toilets in a park with a playground."
Cr Fraser raised the issue again at last week's council meeting for councillors to investigate.
A council spokesperson said its cleaning and maintenance agreements would be reviewed when the owners "determine the future of the hall".
In May, The Star revealed the owners of the hall received a $18,000 Community Building Partnership grant from the state government, and planned to have the hall reopened in March.
The council spokesperson said the council had no intention to build toilets in Allambee Park in the meantime.
The spokesperson said, however, that toilets in Bennett Park, 550 metres away, were likely to be upgraded to improve ventilation and disabled access.