Phone boxes to be removed from 23 Somerset towns and villages

Many Somerset towns and villages are set to lose their phone boxes (stock photo) Credit: PA

Telephone boxes will soon be removed from 23 Somerset towns and villages.

BT recently held a consultation about the boxes across the county which it says are not often used.

People living in many of the affected areas say they are vital to make up for poor mobile phone signal.

Somerset West and Taunton Council has also carried out consultations ahead of a formal decision being made.

It agrees that there is less demand for phone boxes.

With the spread of mobile telephone communications, the need for public telephone boxes has significantly declined over the past few years and is likely to continue, leading to the current proposals.

Councillor Chris Booth, portfolio holder for communities, Somerset West and Taunton Council
Credit: PA

The boxes set to be disconnected are:

  • Bridgetown (A396 Meadow Cottages)

  • Brompton Regis (Haddon View)

  • Burton (Forge Corner)

  • Corfe (Newton Hill)

  • Exford (Park Street near the Crown Hotel)

  • Exton (Exton Lane near Red Door Farm)

  • Langley Marsh (Blackwater Lane near the Three Horseshoes)

  • Luccombe (near Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary)

  • Luckwell Bridge (B3224 near the River Quarme)

  • North Curry (The Pavement)

  • Porlock

  • Skilgate (near Post Lane)

  • Simonsbath (B3223 near the Exmoor Forest Inn)

  • Stogursey

  • Taunton

  • Taunton (Eastwick Road)

  • Taunton (Farrant Close)

  • Taunton (Holway Green)

  • Taunton (Priorswood Road)

  • Taunton (Wordsworth Drive)

  • Watchet (Liddymore Road)

  • Withypool (New Bridge Road near the post office)

  • Wiveliscombe (West Street)

Several parish councils have objected to the decision. Among them are Luccombe:

We recently had such an emergency with an injury and fire that could have spread to the moor. The injured man was unable to use a mobile phone and had to rely on others in the village to make the call to the fire brigade. “In the event of a power cut, the only facility would have been the public phone box.

Luccombe Parish Council

Once the boxes are disconnected, communities will be given the chance to buy them and turn the space into something new.

Several former telephone boxes across the region have since been repurposed as mini-libraries or holding defibrillators.

A phone box in Westbury-sub-Mendip that was turned into a library. Credit: PA