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My local railway station is being rebuilt to include shops, housing, a hotel, an upgraded ticket office and more comfortable platforms with better facilities. It's taking an age, is causing the most horrendous traffic jams and has already ruined the look and feel of Epsom town centre.
I've always felt that the washrooms reflect the effort and money that's gone into any project, so when using the station recently, I went in to have a look. Yes they'd had a spruce up (I think) in terms of a paint job and possibly a stripped and polished floor, but everything else seemed the same - even down to the bars of soap!
The only places I ever expect to see block soap these days is in hotel rooms, where they thoughtfully leave a tiny individually wrapped tablet for each guest. I used one once but was dismayed to find that the following day it had been replaced with a new one - which I think is a tremendous waste, so that was the last time I bothered unwrapping one.
I was delighted to discover yesterday though, that these almost new soap tablets are not necessarily wasted and that in the US they are often collected up, melted down, screened for impurities and then reformed and distributed to those who don't have any hand-washing products (see story below).
This is a great idea and I hope one that will spread to other parts of the world, as although in the developed world we tend to dislike tablet soap, it could well be a lifesaver elsewhere.
2nd August 2012