The Cathedral’s red phone on Chorister’s Green was the unusual star of a special OB by BBC Wiltshire’s Graham Seaman today.
The phone was the focal point of the Lunchtime Show between 12:00 and 14:00 on BBC Wiltshire with interviewees phoning in, passers by invited to join Graham in the box and even our Canon Treasurer, Dr Robert Titley sharing his stories about the box and its designer.
The phone box has a unique connection with the Cathedral. The original design was drawn up by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, grandson of Sir George Gilbert Scott who worked extensively on the Cathedral interior and West Front in the 1860s, restoring much of the ‘damage’ done by James Wyatt in the late 18 Century.
Giles Gilbert Scott’s phone box has become a symbol of the United Kingdom. Until relatively recently it was a familiar sight on the streets of not only this country but abroad in Malta, Bermuda and Gibraltar. Over 240,000 red telephone boxes were installed between the 1920s and 1980s but they fell out of favour in the 1980s and now only 9,400 remain. Many have been adapted for different purposes including book exchanges, art galleries and heart defibrillator storage.
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