UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Powered By Google Custom Search Vintage Radio and TV Service Data

Go Back   UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Discussion Forum > Specific Vintage Equipment > Vintage Telephony and Telecomms

Notices

Vintage Telephony and Telecomms Vintage Telephones, Telephony and Telecomms Equipment

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 30th Sep 2020, 9:54 am   #1
G6Tanuki
Dekatron
 
G6Tanuki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Wiltshire, UK.
Posts: 9,414
Default More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

From the local paper:

https://www.gazetteandherald.co.uk/n...way-wiltshire/

Must admit, I can't remember when I last used a payphone; it certainly wasn't this century!

Some of the local ones have been bought-from-BT-for-1 and converted into lending-libraries; however I know of a couple that were bought-for-1 but now stand at the roadside as mouldering unkempt glassless relics, the 'community proposals' to make use of them never having happened.
G6Tanuki is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 30th Sep 2020, 10:31 am   #2
paulsherwin
Moderator
 
paulsherwin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Oxford, UK
Posts: 20,909
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

The only people who use payphones around these parts seem to be drug dealers.
paulsherwin is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 30th Sep 2020, 10:59 am   #3
Refugee
Dekatron
 
Refugee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Worksop, Nottinghamshire, UK.
Posts: 4,835
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Our naughty pharmacists have got mobiles.
Naughty farmers were growing it near where I live until the local police assisted them with the harvesting.
Refugee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30th Sep 2020, 11:07 am   #4
paulsherwin
Moderator
 
paulsherwin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Oxford, UK
Posts: 20,909
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

They still like to use payphones for a number of reasons.
paulsherwin is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 30th Sep 2020, 11:25 am   #5
Refugee
Dekatron
 
Refugee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Worksop, Nottinghamshire, UK.
Posts: 4,835
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

There is a well maintained red phone about a mile or so from where I live.
https://www.google.com/maps/@53.2551...7i13312!8i6656
Refugee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2nd Oct 2020, 10:30 pm   #6
Hermitcrab
Triode
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Barnsley, South Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 21
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

I was a fan of payphones once, but they are now largely redundant due to mobile telephony. The concept of using coins to pay for telephone calls requires the user to have the correct change on them (e.g. 60p to start with from BT payphones), and whereas modern BT payphones work quite well this hasn't always been the case in the UK and other countries, with many users losing their money through the coins being swallowed by the payphone mechanism etc. Also at one time you had to queue for a long time to use a payphone in busy areas.

I don't think you'll find any payphones at all in Scandinavian countries, among some others, now.
Hermitcrab is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 10:49 am   #7
Refugee
Dekatron
 
Refugee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Worksop, Nottinghamshire, UK.
Posts: 4,835
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

I can remember moving into my first home after leaving my parents house in the mid 1980s.
Nine out of ten payphones were either broken or 999 calls only.
There was a long wait for a land line phone.
It was at a time when they were repainting all their vans and that took a lot from the quality of service they provided.
I can still remember having to push the handset to one side of the cradle to get it to go on hook once I finally got a line.
Refugee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 11:42 am   #8
AC/HL
Dekatron
 
AC/HL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Heckmondwike, West Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 9,176
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

I'd guess that BT have a licencing conditions requirement, and I'd also expect that they will fulfil the absolute minimum requirements of that, as is the way of the world. Although privatised they are still expected to pick up the bits that no-one else will. For Wiltshire read UK.
__________________
Bill, BVWS member
AC/HL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 12:40 pm   #9
G3VKM_Roger
Heptode
 
G3VKM_Roger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Southeast Norfolk, UK.
Posts: 653
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by G6Tanuki View Post
From the local paper:

https://www.gazetteandherald.co.uk/n...way-wiltshire/

Must admit, I can't remember when I last used a payphone; it certainly wasn't this century!

Some of the local ones have been bought-from-BT-for-1 and converted into lending-libraries; however I know of a couple that were bought-for-1 but now stand at the roadside as mouldering unkempt glassless relics, the 'community proposals' to make use of them never having happened.
Our village phone booth is now a defibrillator station, which is a good idea but mobile phone coverage is very, very poor, so if one wanted to use it you would need to have access to a landline to call 999 for the access code to the booth. OK if someone gets ill indoors but if they are out in the marshes or fields then not so good.

Not very joined-up thinking!

Roger
G3VKM_Roger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 3:30 pm   #10
Paul_RK
Dekatron
 
Paul_RK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Fakenham, Norfolk, UK.
Posts: 3,004
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

We used one a couple of times two years ago while arranging to move here - I've never owned a mobile instrument - but that's decommissioned now. Fortunately we shouldn't be moving again. Google Maps was a suggestion for locating the nearest one that's working, but it's only indicating two payphones south of Nottingham, plus a smattering across Yorkshire and Lincolnshire: surely there are still a few more than that?

Paul
Paul_RK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 4:17 pm   #11
G6Tanuki
Dekatron
 
G6Tanuki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Wiltshire, UK.
Posts: 9,414
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Locally, the only remaining payphones are one outside the library and one outside the post-office. I don't know if either of them actually work!

Both are at least a mile from my house, so not really much use to me. I guess payphones will shortly have faded into being just a thing-that-old-people-remember, along with things like typewriters, telegrams and postcards.
G6Tanuki is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 9:52 pm   #12
hamid_1
Heptode
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: High Wycombe, Bucks. UK.
Posts: 521
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

There are still a few payphones in High Wycombe, but they've been gradually disappearing over the last few years. It seems like their days are numbered, thanks to the mobile phone.

Things have changed so much since mobile phones have become ubiquitous. Back in the late 1980s and early 1990s I knew a number of people who weren't "on the phone" at home and had to rely on public phone boxes. I was in that position myself for a while. Getting a home phone (landline) could be an expensive affair. There was a high installation charge, and sometimes you had to pay a hefty deposit upfront, particularly if you had a poor credit rating. It could take weeks to get a new line installed. For people in short-term rented accommodation, it just wasn't worth it. The first brick-sized mobile phones were starting to appear around that time. They too were expensive (calls cost 50p per minute plus a monthly rental fee), they also required a credit check and deposit, had limited coverage and battery life of less than a day. Back then, I never thought they'd catch on, or that payphones would disappear.

As far as I know, BT are obliged to provide public telephones but they can remove a payphone if usage is very low for a long period of time, or if there's another payphone within a short distance. Some of the older kiosks have 'Listed Building' status and can't be removed so easily. BT has offered some of these to the local community for other purposes, such as mini-libraries or defibrillator stations to treat heart attacks. Under the Adopt-a-Box scheme, locals can 'buy' the phone box for 1 and put it to another use (adopters are not allowed to provide telecommunications services from the old kiosk - presumably BT don't want to effectively give a kiosk to a competitor).

I get the impression that BT are running down the remaining payphones in order to justify removing them. Some of them look dirty and uninviting. The minimum fee is now 60p (quite a lot for a short call) and you must make up the minimum fee using 4 coins or less, which can be awkward if you don't have the right combination of coins. Some payphones no longer accept cash, only credit / debit cards or free calls such as 999, 112 or 0800 numbers. This further limits their usefulness. The 'Phonecard' payphones are long gone.

There was a glimmer of hope for the phone booth. Not so long ago, I heard that some companies were planning to install new ones, not because there's a demand for payphones but because they can carry advertising. Apparently it's easier to get planning permission for a public telephone than a billboard, which is what the companies really wanted to use them for. I'm not sure if any new ones have actually been installed for advertising purposes yet. I haven't noticed any here; I expect the target locations to be in busy city centres with high footfall.
hamid_1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 11:16 pm   #13
AC/HL
Dekatron
 
AC/HL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Heckmondwike, West Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 9,176
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Until the present difficulties I used to travel by bus to my old local pub occasionally, via Bradford city centre. As well as free Wi-Fi there is at least one "landline" phone near the town hall. You have to stand in the open though, no booth, and it isn't strictly a payphone - it's free.
__________________
Bill, BVWS member
AC/HL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd Oct 2020, 11:32 pm   #14
Hermitcrab
Triode
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Barnsley, South Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 21
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hamid_1 View Post
I get the impression that BT are running down the remaining payphones in order to justify removing them. Some of them look dirty and uninviting. The minimum fee is now 60p (quite a lot for a short call) and you must make up the minimum fee using 4 coins or less, which can be awkward if you don't have the right combination of coins. Some payphones no longer accept cash, only credit / debit cards or free calls such as 999, 112 or 0800 numbers. This further limits their usefulness. The 'Phonecard' payphones are long gone.
I have wondered whether you do really have to use a minimum of 4 coins to make up the 60p minimum charge. Or whether if you only had 6 * 10p coins on your person (or 1 * 20p piece and 4 * 10p!) that might work. Maybe someone was in that situation and has tried it?

Your 60p buys 30 minutes apparently on a local call which is quite generous. You might think that people wouldn't talk that long on a payphone, but I have observed people in the past spending longer than that talking on payphones, in some cases giving people the payphone number and getting them to ring back to cut the cost.
Hermitcrab is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th Oct 2020, 2:12 pm   #15
Pellseinydd
Heptode
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Flintshire, UK.
Posts: 609
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hermitcrab View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by hamid_1 View Post
I get the impression that BT are running down the remaining payphones in order to justify removing them. Some of them look dirty and uninviting. The minimum fee is now 60p (quite a lot for a short call) and you must make up the minimum fee using 4 coins or less, which can be awkward if you don't have the right combination of coins. Some payphones no longer accept cash, only credit / debit cards or free calls such as 999, 112 or 0800 numbers. This further limits their usefulness. The 'Phonecard' payphones are long gone.
I have wondered whether you do really have to use a minimum of 4 coins to make up the 60p minimum charge. Or whether if you only had 6 * 10p coins on your person (or 1 * 20p piece and 4 * 10p!) that might work. Maybe someone was in that situation and has tried it?

Your 60p buys 30 minutes apparently on a local call which is quite generous. You might think that people wouldn't talk that long on a payphone, but I have observed people in the past spending longer than that talking on payphones, in some cases giving people the payphone number and getting them to ring back to cut the cost.
I get the impression that BT aren't interested. There are no BT kiosks located in the area covered by our council. The last one in our village was a K8 but in the year before they became 30 years old and could be listed, BT changed all the K8's out for a KX100's. However for the last two years it had no handset on the end of the lead. I reported it a number of times and when they asked for its location, they denied there was one there. Then because of alleged drug dealing, the local council had it removed.

But as you drive around it is still possible to find the 'odd' one at the roadside but they do take some getting at Can't get used very often!

And this is another one used into the early 1990's (it was the penultimate A/B box) when it was in use using 'shillings' (5p in new money) as the minimum charge and as it is now ! Still got the parcel & Directory shelves in it. I'll leave you to guess who's got the A/B box - it was still in the exchange when I recovered the exchange a year or two later.

But outside the old post office in Tintinhull in Dorset, is a kiosk which will not be going away and still has a working telephone it

How times change!
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	DisusedK6.jpg
Views:	55
Size:	147.1 KB
ID:	216983   Click image for larger version

Name:	PenultimateABbox.jpg
Views:	52
Size:	55.4 KB
ID:	216987   Click image for larger version

Name:	K6.jpg
Views:	51
Size:	111.6 KB
ID:	216988   Click image for larger version

Name:	tn_DSCF4086.jpg
Views:	52
Size:	60.6 KB
ID:	216989   Click image for larger version

Name:	tn_DSCF4133.jpg
Views:	52
Size:	56.5 KB
ID:	216990  

Pellseinydd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th Oct 2020, 6:54 pm   #16
emeritus
Dekatron
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Brentwood, Essex, UK.
Posts: 4,018
Default Re: More Wiltshire payphones under threat.

Our local railway station still has a couple of payphones. When I visited the small shopping centre at Great Baddow near Chelmsford last week, its payphone had a notice advisng that BT were proposing to remove it due to lack of use and inviting anyone to make objections.
emeritus is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools



All times are GMT. The time now is 6:51 pm.


All information and advice on this forum is subject to the WARNING AND DISCLAIMER located at https://www.vintage-radio.net/rules.html.
Failure to heed this warning may result in death or serious injury to yourself and/or others.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2002 - 2020, Paul Stenning.