Phone boxes across Burnley and Padiham set to be permanently cut off

The red phone box in River Drive, Padiham. Google Streetview
The red phone box in River Drive, Padiham. Google Streetview

BT has launched a public consultation on its proposals to remove eight phone boxes from across Burnley borough, including two traditional red heritage payphone boxes.

Notices have been posted in each of the relevant phone boxes to inform users and passers-by of the proposals and the consultation process.

In addition, Burnley Council has been advised that, as the local public organisation, it has a responsibility to consult local councils, community groups and residents.

The phoneboxes in question and the number of calls made from each in the last 12 months are listed here:

Calderbrook Avenue/Manchester Road (117); Sycamore Avenue/Gannow Lane (16); Hargher Street/Accrington Road (598); Dryden Street/Victoria Road (361); Whitefield Street, Hapton (62); River Drive/Burnley Road, Padiham (15); Burnley Road, Padiham (658); Lyndhurst Road/Mitella Street (331).

The two red phone boxes are located outside the White Horse Hotel in Burnley Road, Padiham, and next to the Technical College, River Drive/Burnley Road, Padiham.

BT offers three possible responses to the proposal to remove a callbox:

• Agree to the removal

• Adopt the phone box - where the phonebox is a traditional red phonebox, BT is encouraging communities to purchase the box for £1 in order to use it for the benefit of the local community. Further information on this process can be found at: https://bt.com/adopt

• Object to the removal - Ofcom Regulations state that BT has a duty to provide ‘reasonable geographic access to public call boxes’ and offer relevant factors to consider including low income areas, proximity to accident blackspots, sporadic mobile network coverage, and level of call volumes.

A case will need to be argued for each objection, backed up with evidence.

The consultation period will close on January 27th and responses should be sent to planning@burnley.gov.uk or Development Management, Burnley Borough Council, Town Hall, Manchester Road, Burnley, Lancashire. BB11 9SA.