BT respond to Sidmouth ‘phone box vandal alert

BT engineers repair vandalised ‘phone kiosk at Woolbrook after call from Sidmouth Herald

BT engineers have been putting a Sidmouth public telephone box back in order this week after calls to the Sidmouth Herald about its vandalised state.

Mary Bruford, 74, of Lymebourne Park, says she reported the kiosk near Lidl supermarket as being out of order nearly two years ago.

“About 18 months ago I spoke to Councillor Stuart Hughes about it. It is the only public ‘phone for people at Lymebourne.

“Why leave it there, it is a disgrace, why don’t they take it away or give us a proper phone box?” she asked.

As well as removing the handset and light bulb, panes of glass and even the pane supports have been damaged.

Mrs Bruford said she “blamed councillors” for not getting the box repaired sooner, but Mr Hughes said BT was responsible for keeping the telephone boxes in order, not the council, and youths were “always vandalising” the box near Lidls.

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He added: “I think all the boxes could do with a good lick of paint.”

Investigations were made by BT after a call this week from the Herald. A spokesman said: “The last reported fault was made about a year ago because there was no dial tone.

“Given the situation we will have someone up there to have a look at it and do whatever needs to be done.”

He said the kiosk was not one of those earmarked for removal “or if it was there were objections to it.”

He said BT would not replace panes of glass if they kept getting smashed because of the safety risk to users.