Toilets under the stars or luxuries? Press release.

data publikacji: 2010-10-21

Toilets under the stars or luxuries?
What do Polish football fans think of toilets at stadiums – the latest survey commissioned by CWS-boco.

During this year’s Toaleta2012.pl educational campaign, the TNS OBOP market research company conducted a survey commissioned by CWS-boco Poland among football fans and key representatives of the sports environment concerning the condition of toilets at Polish sports stadiums. The results are unambiguous: toilets are important for all stadium visitors: fans, commentators and players. Moreover, toilets at old stadiums are in poor condition and lack the basic equipment that can be found at new stadiums. During EURO 2012 only those toilets that are well-kept, clean and available for everybody will look good. And everyone has to take care of them – both their users and the stadium administrators.

For the third time, CWS-boco Poland initiated a survey as part of the Toaleta2012.pl educational campaign (www.toaleta2012.pl), the aim of which is to improve the standard of Polish public toilets before the beginning of EURO 2012, which is being co-hosted by Poland. The tournament is approaching fast, so the campaign is increasingly referring to the nation’s sports infrastructure. This year the survey concerned the opinion of football fans and representatives of the sports environment on the condition of toilets at Polish stadiums.

The turf comes first, toilets are right behind

Sports fans, players and sports journalists agreed that toilets are important elements of stadiums and that they influence the quality of the event. For footballers the most important things are good turf, which is their workplace, locker rooms and toilets that should be separate for both teams, which is still rarely found. Comfort watching the match, the location of sectors, safety and good stadium capacity are other elements important to users. Unfortunately, the footballing reality in terms of infrastructure largely differs from Western standards – especially at old football stadiums which are still in the majority here in Poland.

Toilets in old football stadiums

What do the toilets in old stadiums look like? Those for footballers are stationary toilets equipped with showers and are located in team locker rooms. In many cases they are of a very low technical standard. Sometimes they lack basic equipment, such as towels, toilet paper or soap.

Journalists and sports commentators working in old stadiums often have to use the fan toilets or those situated at the back of the pitch. They believe both solutions are unsatisfactory. In fact, the fan toilets don’t even deserve to be called such, as in the majority of cases they are portable toilets that lack both running water and toilet paper. What is interesting though, is that the portable toilets are sometimes used for different purposes than intended – there have been cases when they were used as weapons, launched at rival fans or police officers.

The conclusion from the survey is simple: using the toilets in old stadiums is not a pleasant experience. Probably this is why 20% of fans looks for other places near stadiums that could be used as toilets.

Toilets in new football stadiums

Opinions about toilets at new and old stadiums are completely different. In the case of the first ones, 60% of fans described the standard of toilets as high or very high, while in the case of old stadiums, only every twentieth fan thought the standard to be high.

Do new stadiums mean new quality? In many respects they do. Toilets for players at new stadiums fulfil international standards – their number fulfils the expectations of footballers, they provide privacy and non-standard equipment in wellness rooms. The situation is similar in case of journalists who now have separate toilets in commentator’s rooms, which are well-kept and well-equipped. New stadiums, classified as sports arenas, set new standards in Polish sport and give hope for the future.

Toilets in new stadiums also come up to the expectations of football fans. They are made of high-quality materials, there are enough toilets for men and women and, unlike in the past, running water is always available. The standard of toilets is high but according to fans their cleanliness leaves much to be desired. Toilets in Polish stadiums are simply neglected, which shows just how much still needs to be changed in terms of social awareness related to toilets. Despite proper technical solutions, without proper care toilets will put people off, while they should look inviting.

‘The standard of cleanliness and equipment at stadiums, just as in the case of railway stations, airports and our cities, will influence the image of Poland and will be remembered by football fans and tourists after EURO 2012,’ says Andrzej Smółko, CEO of CWS-boco Poland, campaign organiser. ‘Only our common engagement can contribute to the improvement of the publicly available toilets. Cooperation between fans and stadium administrators may have positive results. All we need is to start treating the issue seriously and educate toilet users and those responsible for their condition.

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