Red Phone boxes set to disappear

Thursday October 13th 2016

Red Telephone Box

They’ve featured in iconic films from Local Hero to Rosemary’s Baby while popstars from Blondie to Dr Hook have taken them to the top of the charts.

Fast disappearing from our landscape since the advent of mobile technology, phone boxes once played a vital role in connecting communities.

Now Midlothian Council has launched a new consultation to find out if the booths are still a local lifeline or are they underused and should be removed.

Councillor Jim Bryant, the cabinet member for communities and economy, said:

“BT intends to remove some public payphones across Midlothian because of lack of use over a significant period of time.

“However, before any final decisions are made, we are asking local people for their views as we understand there are many factors that should be taken into account before a payphone is either kept or removed.”

The good news is that BT is also offering the option of allowing communities or local charities to adopt the red ‘heritage’ boxes for £1, if they are not still needed as payphones.

Under this scheme, BT will transfer ownership and offer to pay for a continued electricity supply. The Red Box Scheme has proved popular throughout the UK with boxes transformed to host defibrillators, pop up libraries, tourist information centres, solar charging stations and many more creative uses.

Councillor Bryant urged residents to get in touch, by payphone or other means.

More informartionas well we a list of phone booths that may be removed can be found on the council’s consultations pages HERE

The closing date for responses is Friday 18 November 2016.

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