London Calling Kiosk No.6 – Brief story of the 1st public trunk call in Britain

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In the early days of the telephone folks calling long distance went through the operator to be connected. In 1959 The first trunk call was made possible from a public pay phone, allowing the caller to dial the number direct. The Launch call was made from Bristol. The Deputy Lord Mayor calling the Lord Mayor of London.

The Red Telephone Box Kiosk No.6

Britains red telephone box made by the General Post Office (GPO) between 1926 and 1983 where designated a model number K1 through to K8. The K6 or Kiosk No.6 is the model name of the Red telephone box in London in the 1950s at the time of the first direct long distance call.  Taking coins 3d, 6d and 1 shilling. The K6 was first designed in 1935, by Sir Giles, Gilbert Scott in commemoration of King George V Silver Jubilee, held that year. They were released in 1936 and stopped being built towards the end of the 1960s. There is some estimates that have 10-11,000 still in existence today. Back in the days long before the mobile phone the red telephone box was the iPhone or android of its day, though slightly less featured in that it allowed the caller to make a call.

How big is the Red Telephone box

The K6 was 8ft in height, 3ft wide. Cast iron, with teak wood sections forming the grid on the window panes in the door. The windows were in an 8×3 formation of rectangles one large with two smaller at either end. The solid concrete floor. The top sign “Telephone” was illuminated. The Crown emblem embossed on the top. Cupped shaped handle that felt nicely formed. The dome-shaped roof was inspired by the domed roof of  Sir John Soane’s Mausoleum, that he designed himself. It was ornate and was erected in 1816.

K6 Red telephone box London
K6 Red telephone box London
K6 Telephone box artwork Kingston upon Thames. By David Mach 12 boxes entitled "Out of Order"
K6 Telephone box artwork Kingston upon Thames. By David Mach 12 boxes entitled “Out of Order”

The Design Inspiration of the Red Telephone Box

 

John Soane's Mausoleum that the Red Telephone box roof design was took it's inspiration from.
John Soane’s Mausoleum that the Red Telephone box roof design took it’s inspiration from.

Thatcher Years – Britains Iron Lady (1979-90)

 

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