People Are Only Just Realising What WC Toilet Sign Actually Stands For

People are only just realising what the WC toilet sign actually stands for. Find out more information here...
Credit: Alamy

People are only just realising what ‘WC’ on a toilet sign actually stands for.

In the UK, public toilets are referred to in many different ways. Some call it a restroom, others call it the loo.

However, most public toilets are signalled by a ‘WC’ sign, yet no one seems to know what it actually means.

Well, now we know.

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TikTok user, who posts under @Itsnathannyc, responded to a follower who asked him what ‘WC’ stands for. 

In the clip, viewed more than 3,500 times, he also educated viewers with some toilet history.

And when broken down, the true meaning of ‘WC’ actually makes perfect sense.

He explains: “Before indoor plumbing, we actually had a room for the bathtub, a bathroom.

“But the spout was outside. You had to carry water in with a bucket, heat it up, pour it in the tub.

“Indoor plumbing comes along and there is already a room with a bath, the bathroom, so where do you put the toilet?

“Just put it in a closet, it’s the easiest place to put a toilet.”

And with that, the TikToker reveals that ‘WC’ actually stands for ‘water closet’.

WC toilet sign
A TikToker has revealed what the ‘WC’ sign on toilets really means. Credit: @itsnathannyc

People quickly took to the comments to discuss this apparent revelation – despite it having been around since the 1870s in England.

One wrote: “I’m glad someone asked because I’ve been wondering this for years but never googled it.”

Someone else said: “Can’t believe I’ve been living with a WC sign and had no idea why it was called WC.”

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A third added: “I was 23 y/o when I learned that WC is called water closet.”

“I know what a water closet is, but don’t use it (don’t use the word – do use the WC),” commented a fourth.

Another person said: “What do you mean WC stands for water closet…”

Others, though, were stunned that people had gone throughout their lives without knowing what ‘WC’ stands for.

One said: “I’ve known this since I was 13?

“Convinced I live in LA because of the common sense levels in the UK, or lack thereof.”

@itsnathannyc Reply to @findyoursmiles ♬ original sound – Nathan

Another wrote: “What?! Who doesn’t know this?”

A third added: “Surely everyone knows what ‘WC’ stands for?”

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Written by Rosario Monachino

Rosario is a content editor at IGV who specialises in film, TV and entertainment news. He has a degree in English and Film from the University of Salford and a masters in Journalism from Liverpool John Moores University.