TV debut for Uig’s Agnes

At 75, Agnes MacLennan from Uig maybe one of the nation's oldest Loo Cleaners, but she's not set to retire yet.

At 75, Agnes MacLennan from Uig maybe one of the nation's oldest Loo Cleaners, but she's not set to retire yet.

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A well known and love Isle of Lewis Loo Cleaner is making her television début on BBC ALBA tonight (Monday, June 3rd) as part of Trusadh documentary ‘Gaisgich nan Goireasan – The Ladies and Gents’.

Agnes MacLennan, 75, who keeps a daily lid on things at the community-run Reef Campsite toilets in Uig is appearing on the light-hearted doc, filmed in the run-up to the 25th annual ‘Loo of the Year Awards 2013’ – a competition dubbed the ‘Toilet Oscars’.

As they await news of the awards this humorous documentary squeezes into the cubicles with some of the unsung stalwarts keeping Scotland’s ‘cludgies’ flushing: it can be grubby, it can be ugly, but pride in the job is overflowing.

Local authorities are not legally obliged to provide public toilets and loos, and their cleaners are on the decline.

So in some cases communities, like Agnes’ in Uig, have stepped in and are running their own facilities for little return.

Agnes admits she might be one of the nation’s oldest loo cleaners, but retirement isn’t on the cards yet: “Someone’s got to do it,” she says.

“It’s not twice a day you need to be here, but three times,” Agnes continues. “They get well used. They are very popular. The men are cleaner and tidier, far better than the females.”

Trusadh: Gaisgich nan Goireasan – The Ladies and Gents’ has been produced for BBC ALBA by MacTV and will air on the Gaelic channel tonight (Monday, June 3rd) at 9pm, and again at the same time on Tuesday, June 4th.