‘Spare these ten Clydesdale phone boxes facing axe’

There are no objections to the loss of the phone box at Cleghorn Avenue, Lanark.
There are no objections to the loss of the phone box at Cleghorn Avenue, Lanark.

South Lanarkshire Council is backing objections to plans to scrap 10 phone boxes in rural Clydesdale.

It wants the public phones in Leadhills, Crawford, Crawfordjohn, Abington, Elvanfoot, Symington, Walston, Newbigging, Elsrickle and Dolphinton to be spared the axe.

Following further consultation, it will submit its comments to BT and the Department of Trade and Industry by Saturday, December 3.

BT is considering scrapping thousands of call boxes nationwide, saying that their use has declined by more than 90% over the last decade.

In Clydesdale, councillors are backing Leadhills Community Council’s ojection to the removal of the payphone there, on the grounds of high usage – some 158 calls in the last year – plus its remote location and lack of mobile coverage.

The planning committee also backs Blackmount Community Council’s arguments for keeping phones in Dolphinton, Elsrickle, Newbigging and Walston, even though none was used at all in the last year, on grounds including inconsistent mobile coverage.

Duneaton Community Council’s objections to the removal of the payphones in Abington and Crawfordjohn are also being supported, as are ones in Crawford, for a box near a playpark, and another in Elvanfoot, close to what is said to be an accident blackspot.

It also objects to the removal of the phone in Symington.

The committee noted general concern at the loss of payphones in remoter rural areas where mobile coverage can be poor and insisted that the state of disrepair of some payphones was a contributory factor to low usage.

The other call boxes earmarked for removal are at Auchengray, which hosted three calls in the last year; Cleghorn Avenue, Lanark (108 calls); Braidwood Road, Braidwood (27 calls); opposite Boghall Road, Braidwood (five calls); Cairneymount Road (one call); Merlindale, Forth (23 calls); Braehead (seven calls); Climpy Road, Forth (two calls); Crossford Hall, Crossford (29 calls); Carstairs Junction (13 calls); Beechgrove Street, Rigside (15 calls); Morrison Street, Douglas Water (two calls); the Crescent, Lesmahagow (17 calls); New Trows Road, Lesmahagow (one call); A72 Wolfclyde Bridge, Biggar (four calls); and Mill Road-Millands Road, Thankerton, (42 calls); Quothquan Post Office, Thankerton (no calls).

Call boxes facing the axe at Cleghorn, Cartland, Nemphlar, Carluke’s Glencoe Road, Sandy Road and Shieldhill Road, near Kilncadzow, Haywood at Forth, Dunn Crescent and Coalburn Road in Coalburn, Ayr Road at Rigside, Hazelbank Post Office, Sandilands, Crossridge Road at Douglas Water, Brocketsbrae Road and Lanark Road at Lesmahagow, and Coulter and Roberton at Biggar took no calls last year.