SHROPSHIRE Council has received a list from BT of 75 payphones in the Shropshire Council area that BT propose to permanently remove from service.

BT has an obligation to consult with Shropshire Council with regard to the proposed removals. A formal 90-day consultation has therefore commenced with the council, as set out by Ofcom.

During the 90-day period, Shropshire Council’s job as the local planning authority is to seek views from local town councils and parish councils and to include any views from local councillors, residents, policing teams etc, in order to help it to reach a decision in each case as to whether to consent to removal of the service and box, object in order to keep the service operational, or consent to removal of the telephone, but retain the box itself.

This is a tough decision for Wem Town Council, which has seen the phone box in High Street used 115 times in the last year. Meanwhile the payphone in New Street was used 58 times in the last 12 months.

Another relatively well used payphone is in Whitchurch by the train station, which saw use 40 times last year.

Gwilym Butler, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet for communities, place planning and regulatory services, said: “This is a real opportunity for local communities to think about the usage of their payphones.

“We are aware that there are continuing concerns around poor mobile phone coverage in Shropshire, and would urge local town councils and parish councils, and any interested members of the community, to let us know if this is an issue in your area, or if there are other reasons we should object to removal of the payphones.

“Please take a look at the listing, and the further guidance we are making available in our online resources shortly, and get in touch with your views.

"We are pleased BT has extended the consultation deadline overall to Thursday, December 19.

The first phase of the consultation will greatly help us in reaching an initial view, and closes on Friday, November 8 at 4pm."

For more details on phonebox usage, visit