Page last updated at 09:45 GMT, Wednesday, 30 July 2008 10:45 UK

Tin cans protest over phone box

Phone box
Is anyone listening? Villagers make their protest

Fed-up Cornish villagers have sent an urgent call to get their vandalised phone box fixed by fitting it with tin cans and string.

The protest in Perranwell appeared after BT told local people it would take until 22 August to put the box back in working order.

That is an "inordinate" time to wait, villagers behind the protest said.

BT blamed the delay on the need for specialist equipment to fix the phone box which was severely damaged.

Villager Stuart Douglas said: "The phone box was vandalised in June.

"To be told that it will take until 22 August to fix is an inordinate delay.

"We have elderly people in the village and this is on the only phone box for half a mile. What would happen in an emergency?"

Support messages

Perranwell's only other phone box has also been vandalised, but that has been earmarked for closure as part of a cull of 200 red phone boxes in Cornwall by BT.

The string and tin cans at Perranwell have been augmented by a phone book - or "phone dreckly", as it is being called by campaigners - and written messages of support.

Jason Mann of BT explained that the entire mechanism of the phone box had been removed, damaging the phone box.

He said: "It is not just a case of putting in a new mechanism.

"We also have to make repairs to the fabric of the kiosk and that needs specialist equipment.

"It has taken longer than usual because of that."

Up to 200 phone boxes to be axed
20 Apr 04 |  Cornwall
Red telephone box gets protection
12 Jan 04 |  Cornwall

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