£4,900 compostable toilet set to take Chelsea Flower Show by storm

Spending a little more than a penny! £5,000 bijou compostable toilets designed for back gardens are set to take this year’s Chelsea Flower Show by storm – so, would YOU install one?

  • Designer Marnie Moyles’ compostable loos  feature at Chelsea Flower Show
  • The eco-friendly toilet was shortlisted for RHS Product of the Year competition 
  • Elegant cabin toilets designed by Oxfordshire-based Moyles will set you back £4,900 but are said to be suitable for large back gardens as a permanent feature
  • A small amount of water stored in a cupboard in the toilet is heated by solar rays to enable users to wash their hands after visiting the loo 

Outdoor loos might have long since been consigned to the history books – to the delight of those who remember them – but they could be making rather an expensive comeback.  

Oxfordshire-based furniture designer Marnie Moyles will present an elegant and eco-friendly toilet at the Chelsea Flower Show this year, the Telegraph reports, suggesting that compostable garden loos could soon be the norm.  

Marnie’s loos, which come in a pretty wooden cabin and can set a buyer back around £4,900, have been shortlisted for the Royal Horticultural Society’s Product of the Year Competition.

The annual celebration of horticulture, postponed due to the pandemic and now taking place from 21 to 26 September, has been pushing for greener and more eco-friendly initiatives. 

Oxfordshire-based furniture designer Marine Moyles will showcase her compostable loos at this September’s Chelsea Flower Show. The £4,900 eco-loo is designed to look pretty enough to put in a large garden (pictured: the loos prototype)

The Green Oak Compost Loo was inspired by a Sedan chair, and looks like a small, elegant grey-washed cabin. 

Marnie said she wanted to create a loo that people would like to go to, because outdoor and public loos could be ‘horrible.’

‘I did worry it might be too tasteless for Chelsea. We Brits whisper the word loo and are not at all easy discussing the subject. Yet the valuable resources we flush away have to be attended to,’ she said. 

Marnie joked anyone could put together a compostable loo with a bucket, but she wanted to add an element of craftsmanship to hers. 

The loo is sun-powered, with sunbeams used to heat a small amount of water stored in a cupboard in the toilet so that users can wash their hands. 

The toilet contains a bench seat with a hole, made of scrubbed oak, and the cabin is made from Accoya, sustainable wood from New Zealand.   

Marnie, pictured, was inspired by a sedan chair to create her loos, which are made of occaya, a sustainable timber from New Zealand 

She is finalising the loo’s last details before presenting it at the RHS Product of the Year competition, which this year puts the focus on green credentials. 

Marnie hopes her loos will be used by people with large gardens, and even on community gardens and at festivals. 

The designer’s nine other rivals for the prize include a zero-emissions lawn mower costing £1,699, as well as chairs and pots made from recycled ocean plastic.

This year’s Chelsea Flower Show will take place in September after the pandemic forced the horticultural celebration to be postponed (Pictured: The Queen with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at the 2019 show)

Tim Hopson, director of horticulture and education at RHS has said he thought the loo was suitable for the Chelsea Garden Show because it showed ‘how barriers can be removed from people getting involved in gardening.’ 

He went on to say that not everyone had a garden, and that the lack of loos in a community allotments had been a recurring issue for some.  Tim also said the loo was a testament to a growing interest among gardeners to be more eco-friendly and to have a lesser impact on nature. 

He added all the gardening enthusiasts he knew were trying to minimise their impact on the environment. 

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