ONCE an iconic part of everyday life, the Great British phone box is rapidly disappearing from the landscape.
Stratford District Council has received a list of 28 public payphones in the district that could be removed by BT.
BT says overall use of payphones has declined by over 90 per cent and some of the phone boxes earmarked for removal haven’t been used at all within the last year.
With at least 98 per cent of the UK having either 3G or 4G coverage, mobile phones are in constant use now and can call the emergency services even when there is no credit or no coverage provided.
Phone boxes are not being removed where there is no network coverage, in accident black spots, and a number of other locations which meet certain criteria.
British Telecom (BT) has placed consultation notices on the relevant payphones and the district council is consulting via town and parish councils on three options:
- to agree to the removal
- to adopt the call box for use by the local community; or
- to object to the removal
The consultation closes on 4th November 2019.
However, it isn’t always the end of the line for old phone boxes as some communities have adopted a phone box and converted it into a small café, library, defibrillator point and visitor information site.
In Alcester two phone boxes are included on the removal list and the town’s High Bailiff David Parkes said: “In general terms if an old phone old red phone box is to be shut down I think it would be a good place to situate a community speed camera.”
Some of the phone boxes proposed by BT for removal include:
Fenny Compton Village Hall (not used within the last 12 months).
Studley, High Street (used 17 times in last 12 months).
Studley, Highfield Road/Station Road (31).
Studley, Littlewood Green (4).
Henley, Stratford Road near New Road (1).
Little Compton (0).
Long Compton, Butler’s Road (0).
Lower Brailes, High Street (0).
Stratford, Justins Avenue (255).
Tiddington, Main Street (9).
Stratford, Manor Road (8).
Stratford, Shipston Road (93).
Stratford, Drayton Avenue (149).
Wimpstone, Stratford (0).
Pillerton Priors (0).
Ettington, Banbury Road/Churchill Close (5).
Alcester, Kinwarton Road (107).
Alcester, Hertford Road (51).
Lighthorne Heath, Leam Road (5).
Ashorne, Warwick (4).
For further information, visit: https://www.stratford.gov.uk/consultation-performance/bt-payphone-removal.cfm