Pensioner locked in loo for four days, knits scarf


By Suffolk Gazette Staff

Plucky pensioner Gladys Phillips didn’t panic when she was locked in a public toilet for four days – she settled down to knit a scarf and munched on a packet of mint imperials.

Gladys, 82, was out shopping in Felixstowe when, feeling the need to answer a call of nature, she visited a newly installed public loo off Hamilton Road.

But she was unaware the hi-tech convenience had not yet been officially opened to the public, and after forcing her way inside the door locked tight behind her.

It was not until FOUR days later when workmen came to finish off the painting that Gladys was found sitting on the loo finishing off the last few stitches of her pink scarf.

“I was not really concerned at first when I couldn’t get out,” Gladys said. “In fact I was just relieved I’d managed to go to the loo!

“I kept banging on the door and walls, and shouting for help, but obviously no one could hear me. I realised I had to tough it out, and so I sat on the loo and began knitting.

“Luckily I had just been to the shops and picked up a new ball of pink wool, so I began making a scarf, which one of my lucky grandchildren will now get for Christmas.

“I had also popped into the sweet shop after collecting my pension, so I had a full bag of mint imperials to eat which kept my spirits up no end.

“The loo was very clean and cosy. I was able to sleep on my big overcoat and was lovely and warm, and if I got cold I just sat under the hand dryer for a while.

Gladys uses the hand dryer to keep warm while locked in loo

“It was a great relief when the nice builder turned up and opened the door. He got quite a shock, I can tell you.”

Widow Gladys lives on her own and does not have a telephone, so her daughter, who now live near Bury St Edmunds, had no idea she was missing from home.

“They have now been on at me to get a phone installed at home – and one of these mobile phone things for when I’m out shopping. I suppose I shall have to catch up with the times.”

A Felixstowe town councillor insider said: “We’re glad Gladys is none the worse for her ordeal. The fact that she was quite happy in the loo for four days does, however, show how modern and hi-tech it is.”

The convenience is now open to the general public, but Gladys has promised not to stop for a cup of tea on future shopping trips, just in case she gets caught short again.

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19 Comments on "Pensioner locked in loo for four days, knits scarf"

  1. The opposite happened to my 83 years old neighbour. She couldn’t lock the loo door and was arrested for indecent exposure by a CPO after a gang of youths stole her underwear and shoes. To make matters worse she was locked up over night, for her own safety and publicly humiliated the following day in the magistrates court as she was a prominent well known poppy seller in the local community having collected well over a hundred thousand pounds in her lifetime for good causes. Because of her good character she avoided a fine and got away with a warning and community service. Unfortunately she never collected another penny again for charity and was too ashamed to accept a garden party invitation to Buckingham Palace for her services. She died within a few days.
    It was difficult to get a Minister to administer her funeral and very nearly had to forego a Christian burial, shunned by her close friends and family she is now buried in a paupers grave with no headstone and is missed by no one except for a single rose placed on her plot by an anonymous donor every Valentine’s Day and even this is confiscated after one day by the cemetery caretaker.

  2. Oh Bless she is HeroineI would have panicked ­čîł

  3. Huberta Humphrey | December 23, 2015 at 3:53 am | Reply

    I can’t be the only one to have thought of this song:

  4. elaine webster | December 22, 2015 at 7:41 pm | Reply

    ROCKYMTNHIKER- you think yarn is not cheap and she should be able to afford a cell phone? yarn can cost peanuts, not all yarn is ‘not cheap’ so not quite a realistic comparison. not knowing her feelings toward a phone, cell or landline its stupid to make any assumptions.

  5. That makes me sad. If it had been my mother I would make sure that she had a cell phone ( as well as a home phone). She has money to buy yarn from a yarn shop which is not cheap so that means she is not indigent. When my mother was living I would not have gone 4 days without speaking to her. It seems like someone in the family could make sure that she has a phone.

  6. There was an old lady, got locked in a lavatory, she was there from Monday to Saturday, and nobody knew she was there.

  7. Do you have to pay to get out? How could she be locked in?

    In the USA if it is a pay “loo” you pay to get in not out.

  8. It does say she forced her way in, never a good idea. Good job there was plenty of water and a place to go – and she got out just in time for Christmas.

  9. I’m very glad the “nice” builder was able to let her out. He owns that woman something for the hell she went through. She is dismissing it all as not terribly frightening, but I don’t believe her. She had to have been miserable. Some moron should have locked the door, so people couldn’t get in and use it.

  10. “ME” – She didn’t seem too bothered about it, her own comments where quite flippant TBH.

  11. This is by far the best story of Christmas. My mum got locked in a loo in Barcelona once. It was a paid automated loo and she waited for my dad to come out before popping in herself. Of course they kept the door open so she didn’t have to pay her fee but got a shock when the door closed (thinking my dad had exited) and the lights went out and the loo began a wash down process spraying the whole floor with water. She came out a little shocked and wet!

  12. I want to see the scarf!

  13. Dear Editor,

    Elderly lady locked in a loo for 4 days with no food or heat? Doesn’t sound very christmassy to me.

  14. Shame to read a flippant report on such a serious subject. The poor woman :(

  15. I blame Jeremy Corbyn , the truth will come out.

  16. …and there was plenty of water available so she didn’t suffer from dehydration. Having been in a similar situation – only in a pub – I’ve found it can be difficult to get one’s head far enough down in the bowl to get a good drink.

  17. Lucky that she already had the wool so she could go four days in there without spending a penny!

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