Chance to adopt a Chichester district red phone box for just £1

Chance to adopt a phone box like this one in Sidlesham. Photo: Google Street Maps
Chance to adopt a phone box like this one in Sidlesham. Photo: Google Street Maps

Community groups across the Chichester district have the chance to adopt a local BT phone box for just £1 to turn them into something inspirational for their local area.

There are 30 phone boxes in the district available for adoption and BT will also consider adoption requests to house defibrillators in more modern boxes.

Red phone box campaign SUS-161111-101058001 SUS-161111-101058001 SUS-161111-101058001 SUS-161111-101058001

Red phone box campaign SUS-161111-101058001 SUS-161111-101058001 SUS-161111-101058001 SUS-161111-101058001

Already, more than 780 payphones have been adopted by communities in the South-East since 2008.

A campaign was launched in 2016 to save iconic red telephone boxes in towns and villages throughout Sussex.

Members of Sussex Heritage Trust said at the time that the much-loved K6 public phone box - a distinctive feature of the British landscape for decades - was increasingly under threat.

In this latest move, BT says it will continue to provide electricity (if already in place) to power the light for adopted kiosks, free of charge to communities.

In a statement this week BT say that where electricity is available, adopted boxes can be used as housings for defibrillators – an increasingly popular and potentially life-saving conversion.

Other new ventures include conversions to mini-libraries, miniature art museums, cake shops and information centres.

One payphone in Devon was even turned into the ‘world’s smallest nightclub’.

Commenting on the latest initiative, Katherine Bradley, BT’s Senior Payphones Commercial and Operations Manager, said: “We’re pleased to be giving even more local communities the chance to adopt a phone box.

“With more than 780 payphones already adopted across the South-East, this is a fantastic opportunity for communities to own a piece of history.

“The opportunities are endless and we’ve already seen some amazing transformations. Applying is easy and quick and we’re always happy to speak to communities about adopting our traditional BT red payphone boxes.”

The phone boxes being considered by BT are at the following postcodes:

PO18 9JJ (Stoughton), PO18 9EF (Walderton), PO18 9EN (West Marden), RH20 1PQ (Bignor), RH20 1EN (Fittleworth), GU28 9BZ (Lodsworth), GU28 0HL (Petworth), GU28 0AH (Petworth), GU28 0AA (Petworth), GU31 5LZ (East Harting), GU29 0JY (Elsted), GU31 5QB (South Harting), GU29 0DJ (Heyshott), GU29 0JT (Elsted), GU28 9LD (Ebernoe), RH14 0NA (Kirdford), RH14 0PX (Plaistow), PO18 0QX (West Dean), PO18 0HX (Charlton), PO18 0JG (East Dean), PO18 0PF (Westerton), PO19 2TA (Chichester), PO18 0BQ (Chichester), PO19 3AN (Chichester), PO19 3DP (Chichester), PO20 7JL (Earnley), PO20 7QE (Sidlesham), PO18 9AX (East Ashling), PO18 9JE (east Marden), PO20 8AJ (West Wittering).

Communities can adopt a kiosk if they are a recognised public body, such as a parish council, community council town council or parish meeting.

Boxes can also be adopted by registered charities or by individuals who have a payphone on their own land.

BT say that most people now have a mobile phone and calls made from their public telephones have fallen by around 90 per cent in the past decade.

BT is also replacing more than 1,000 payphones in major cities across the UK, with new digital hubs called InLinks as part of a joint venture with InLinkUK.

“Each InLink provides ultrafast, free public Wi-Fi, phone calls, device charging and a tablet for access to city services, maps and directions.”

For further details on how to apply to Adopt a Kiosk, go to www.bt.com/adopt where application forms and information can be found.