Buy your own Wigan phone box for just £1

The two phone boxes outside the doomed Crown post office on Wallgate are available to buy by a local group or community organisation for 1 each
The two phone boxes outside the doomed Crown post office on Wallgate are available to buy by a local group or community organisation for 1 each

Wigan community groups are being offered the chance to adopt their local phone box for just £1 to turn them into something inspirational for their local area.

More than 260 traditional red boxes are available for adoption across the North West and BT will also consider adoption requests to house defibrillators in more modern boxes.

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BT is encouraging community groups to seize the opportunity to do something wonderful with phone boxes that have little or no usage.

Already, more than 380 payphones have been adopted by communities in the North West region since 2008.

The firm will continue to provide electricity (if already in place) to power the light for adopted kiosks, free of charge to communities.

Where electricity is available, adopted boxes can be used as housings for defibrillators – an increasingly popular and potentially life-saving conversion.

Other 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.”

Private individuals cannot purchase kiosks unless they own the land where the kiosk is currently placed. Those eligible are: a recognised local authority (eg district/borough council); parish/community/town council or equivalent; a registered charity; a private land owner. (Anyone who has a telephone boxes on their land)

Katherine Bradley, BT’s senior payphones commercial and operations manager, said: “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.”

Most people now have a mobile phone and calls made from our 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

For further details on how to apply to adopt a kiosk, go to www.bt.com/adopt.

Do you already own your own community phone box? Let us know. Email newsroom.wigan@jpimedia.co.uk