AN award-winning church in Hurst Green is aiming to raise £30,000 to build an ‘eco-loo’ that will bring the building ‘right up to date’.

St John’s church, which is currently celebrating its 175th anniversary, does not have any toilets, forcing the congregation to ask the reverend if they can use her loo in the vicarage.

The church, which is the only church in Lancashire and in Bradford Diocese, to have achieved the Eco Congregation award three times, also wants to raise enough money to build toilets in a developing country.

Revd Gill Mack said: “Any building in this day and age that does not have any toilets is quite outdated.

“The loo is much needed and the lack of one has been putting people coming to church, epically older people and families with young children.

“This ‘eco-loo’ composts the waste so it can be used on people’s gardens which is a great way to live up to our eco congregation status.

“We have raised £14,500 so far so we still have a long way to go and we are continuing to raise funds every week.”

Church warden Clare Hyde said: “It’s humbling that 10 per cent of the money that we want to raise would build a toilet block for a whole village in a developing country and that’s a great thing to be a part of.

“We are celebrating a very important anniversary this year and it would be great to get it all finished by the end of the year.

“This would make a big difference to the church when it’s all completed and I hope it encourages people who have been put off to come back to church.”

A composting toilet either uses no water or only a small amount and the waste is mixed with sawdust, coconut coir or peat moss to support aerobic processing, absorb liquids, and to reduce the odor.

This is generally faster than the anaerobic decomposition used in wet sewage treatment systems such as septic tanks.