Who uses payphones these days??

July 19th, 2015, 5pm

An iconic British red telephone box. Designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, the model shown in the photo is a K6, introduced in 1935. This one, on Thursford Green in Norfolk, dates from between 1936 and 1953, as the style of the crown changed after that, from the Tudor Crown shown here, to St Edward’s Crown. In a poll earlier this year, the red telephone box was voted the greatest British design of all time!

By the 1950s there were over 40,000 such kiosks in use across Britain, with the number growing further in the following decades until more recent years when there has been a sharp decline due to the rise in the use of mobile phones (cellphones).

This particular kiosk has had a defibrillator installed in place of the telephone, although I have no idea how much use it gets. It may seem strange for a tiny village to have a public defibrillator - the resident population is just 200! - but a hundred yards or so along the road is The Thursford Collection, the world’s largest collection of steam engines and organs, plus fairground carousels. That attraction gets several hundred thousand visitors a year, so I suppose they’re the people who are more likely to make use of this equipment.

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Adrian Tribe

A follower of Jesus Christ, a husband and father, a Kentish Man (not a Man of Kent), a commuter to London

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