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Readers Respond: Your Recommended London Toilets

Responses: 45

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Russell Square area

Russell Hotel opposite Russell Square as a good example of walking into a large hotel for a very comfy wee.
—Guest Ian

Barts Hospital

Barts (Hospital) is very old. It has a church inside the gate and a larger church just outside (London's oldest in original condition). And London's meat market is still opposite, across Smithfield itself. Go along Giltspur Street until you are opposite Pie Corner (Cock Lane) where the Great Fire sparked its last in 1666. Here is the hospital Outpatients' Entrance. Follow through & around until you get to the stairs up to Medical O/P. Toilets are on the ground floor, wend your way through to the coffee shop where you might get X-rayed if you wait in the wrong queue, and also there are basic toilets on the landings up the old stairs which are nearer the entrance if you are busting. Or you can scoot further up into the 1st floor Medical O/P door, past reception & dive into a nice warm loo cubicle on the right, complete with a sample door if you are feeling generous.
—Guest Ian

South Kensington Museums

Of course, all the museums have toilets but very often they are over-subscribed, particularly in school holiday times and near popular exhibits. So, visiting one of the museums for a special ticketed exhibition during one holiday period, I discovered that there was a long queue at the loos near the main entrance. I popped over the road to the V&A's toilet beneath the Exhibition Road entrance as I knew from old that this is always less crowded. So it is still, and quite large and quiet. But it was very smelly, and showing its years since the Cole wing was built, so perhaps it should be put in a museum. Or the V&A management could at least check that they use a cleaner that cleans. With all the staff cuts I doubt that will happen - so hold your nose and pee in peace.
—Guest Ian

Guildhall

Guildhall library building is on the west side of the courtyard backed by the ancient Hall itself, opposite the art gallery. Your London A-Z is a help in finding Guildhall if you have not previously seen it. Ignoring the ghostly cries of Roman-era Londiniumers egging on gladiators just beneath you, make for one of the automatic glass doorways into the library, past security where you might have to wait cross-legged for your knapsack to creep through an X-ray detector, then grab your bag and scoot around to the right where a door for a reasonably appointed disabled loo is hidden around the corner. The desk people will tell you where it is if you miss. The Guildhall Bookshop awaits and then there's the splendid Library itself. And the art gallery across the way.
—Guest Ian

Royal Exchange, nr Bank Station

Bank station concourse has an adequate toilet which is open all hours. Make for the Royal Exchange entrance. If you carry a compass you can navigate around the concourse, otherwise dodge the traffic and make for the Royal exchange and the stirrup-less horseman outside, then descend next to Threadneedle Street and the toilet is on your left just inside the subway. Warm, not too smelly usually. The ladies is also OK according to Christine. Open quite late; but it was closed last Saturday.
—Guest Ian

Near Tower Bridge - Horsleydown

Alongside Tower Bridge, to the east, on south side of the River. Descend steps on the south end of Bridge & walk along Shad Thames & discover the Design Museum. Has a good quality toilet in a barren area, so make the most of it on your Thames-side walk from Tower Bridge to the Brunel Museum. Excellent design bookshop, also a cafe. Toilets are either side of entrance stairs past pay desk. (The toilet is free, however). Designer basins & taps plus ultra-fast hand driers. Then go across St Saviour's dock to continue your walk, then stop off at the historic Angel pub where there is another loo waiting after you have sampled one of London's cheapest pints. Not only the cheapest but also the most picturesque. Take your camera upstairs & view London from the east, with Tower Bridge full frontal, flanked & backed by an array of famous buildings, plus great views. In good weather sit outside on the balcony or alongside the pub near Dr Salter.
—Guest Ian

Somerset House

There are various cafes in this collection of collections, with toilets nearby. From the riverside, in the South Block, there is a handy toilet inside the Embankment entrance. At courtyard level, still in the South Block, the toilets are in separate cubicles for men or women. Each has a huge mirror, a door hook, nice taps and wash basin and blow drier. In mine, the door lock did not lock and the drier didn't work. Oh well... at least it was clean, well-lit and spacious.
—Guest Ian

Euston and Euston Square stations

The Wellcome Collection is in a large building on the north side of the dual-carriageway Euston Road and east of Euston Square tube station, and west of Euston mainline rail and bus station which is over on the north side of the road. Go to the more easterly entrance, in the older-looking bit, stop to show your rucksack at security, then up the steps and straight ahead and round to the right before the cloakroom to the very good toilet. Then back to the excellent bookshop and rather expensive tea and cakes. Exhibitions include gruesome bits, so visit the loo first.
—Guest Ian

Some more toilet recommendations ;-)

I like to pop into any of London's posh hotels. Simply walk in like you know what you're doing and no one asks any questions. Also, you can usually camp out in the lobby on the comfy sofas for quite a while checking your emails, making phone calls, reading the paper whatever.
—Guest Kevin Evans

Kensington Gardens- Italian fountains

Free and very clean(for public) loos here. Not far from Bayswater Road and Lancaster Gate Tube
—Guest Oli

Unisex loos @ St. Martin in the Fields

Clean enough but male/female share and therefore quite odd to use if you're not used to sharing. Can smell a bit too unfortunately so best avoided unless desperate.
—Guest Cornishscot

Ian you're a genius

Thanks for this wonderful guide! I'll definitely try the one in Waterstone's.
—Guest Karen

West Smithfield, EC1

Underground toilets outside St. Barts Hospital and near the meat market
—Guest Tilly

Don't forget RBKC

Whole Foods on High St Ken have lush loos with Dyson dryers too...hidden upstairs but massively worth the trek when you're too bursting to wait for M&S down the street a bit...
—Guest Holz

Near Tower of London and Tower Hill

Fenchurch Street mainline station, unusually, has a free toilet just inside the main entrance, to the left of the stairs up to the platforms. It is very basic but welcome in a barren area. Cup of tea just up the stairs.
—Guest Ian

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