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The Iconic London Phone Box is Here to Stay Albeit in a Different Colour

phone box

source: E01 ; CC license

When you think of things that remind you of London black taxi cabs and double decker buses immediately spring to mind. But there’s one more things that is very reminiscent of days gone by and that’s the red telephone box, emblazoned with a crown on the top.

Nearly everyone now has a mobile phone so these once useful modes of communication are no longer vital. However Londoners and those living in many other cities would be sad to see them gone forever. But we don’t need to worry as a duo of entrepreneurs have come up with a brilliant idea to keep them on our streets.

Harold Craston and Kirsty Kenney painted one particular phone box an eco-friendly green and fitted solar panels on the roof. The inside has been taken out and replaced with charging stations where you can charge up your mobile device for free. There are also screens that play advertisements but having to watch these is a small price to pay for an otherwise free service. 5 more solarboxes are planned for next spring. They are capable of charging up to 100 mobile devices in a day and all it takes is 10 minutes to boost a battery by 20%.

The boxes will be regularly maintained but locked over night to stop vandalism and overnight guests. Red phone boxes were first introduced in the 1920’s and many Londoners and indeed foreign visitors would be very sad to see them go. Nobody uses them anymore but many a tear would be shed if they disappeared altogether. So what better way to preserve them than giving them a new coat of paint and bringing them bang up to date?

Other uses for this icon have been found including a mini library and a space for art. One box was even converted into micro-pub for a short while and in Scotland one was outfitted with emergency medical equipment. But sadly some of these phone boxes will inevitably disappear and be sent to the phone box graveyard in the sky. So let’s keep our fingers crossed that the charging station idea takes off in other areas, leaving some to remain. Even though they’re no longer red.

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