According to the very courteous and efficient people at British
Telecom Payphones, of the over 15000 red kiosk pay phones, based on
the designs by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, that are currently deployed
throughout the United Kingdom, 946 are in London.
Scott's original design, the K2 of 1924, was replaced in 1935 by the
K6, also by Scott. The K6 was introduced as part of the Jubilee
celebration, and became an instant success with the public. By the
beginning of World War II, 20000 of the kiosks had been installed, and
almost 16000 remain in service. 2400 of the phones are listed as
heritage sites, and as such are legally protected. By an agreement in
1996, BT is the sole company that can provide the Scott phones.
British Telecom Payhones Home Site
Facts About BT Payphones
"A wooden mock-up of Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's 1924 submitted kiosk
design is still in use as a payphone kiosk under the arch at the Royal
Academy, Piccadilly, London."
"There are over 15,000 red telephone boxes still in use in the UK and
around 2,400 are designated as grade two listed buildings.
"The majority of red boxes are of the K6 design, which was the
standard kiosk from 1936 to 1968.
"The K2 design, introduced in 1927, was followed by the K6 which is
still in use, particularly in the London area."
The Jubilee Kiosk
"Events in Telecommunications History
"Kiosk No. 6 - the K6 - was introduced to commemorate the Silver
Jubilee of the coronation of King George V. The 'Jubilee Kiosk', as it
became known, was once again designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott and
was similar in appearance to Kiosk No. 2 the main difference being
that the vertical bars in the windows and door were spaced further
apart to improve visibility. The K2 had not penetrated far outside
London, but the 'Jubilee' model became the first genuinely standard
kiosk and was installed all over the country.
"Under the "Jubilee Concession", introduced as part of that year's
celebrations, kiosks were to be provided in every town or village with
a post office, regardless of cost. As a result of this scheme over
8,000 new kiosks were installed, adding impetus to the spread of the
NR9684 October 10, 1996
BT AND NEW WORLD PHONE BOXES DISPUTE ENDED
"Earlier this summer, BT obtained an injunction to stop their
competitors, New World Payphones, from using the old-style phone boxes
designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, the K2 and K6. New World wanted
to put the old style phone boxes up in parts of London where the local
planning authorities wanted to compel the installation of old style
phone boxes at new sites.
"Precise terms of the agreement are confidential, but BT will make
available to NWP sites where BTs modern kiosk is already installed so
that planning authorities requirements do not prevent the public
taking advantage of New Worlds service in the key tourist areas. At
the same time, BT has the sole right to install the old phone box when
"All existing traditional red kiosks will be retained and a few more
may be installed in especially sensitive sites."
BT Payphones Contact Page