A LUDLOW councillor says that British Telecom has got the wrong number in removing an old style traditional telephone box from the town centre.

Mobile phone reception is not always great in Ludlow and anyway figures show that the telephone box that is next to a taxi rank is still being used.

But the usage is small and over a year people are making calls from the box on average less than twice a day which Andy Boddington, Shropshire councillor for Ludlow North accepts probably makes it not profitable.

BT is progressively removing little or unused phone kiosks around the country.

The number of calls from phone boxes has fallen. Some have not been used in the last year, even longer. Some have been vandalised. The result is that several Ludlow phone kiosks have been removed in recent years.

Now, BT wants to remove the phone box on Upper Galdeford outside the former Budgens store.

“This is wrong,” said Mr Boddington.

“The box was used for 435 calls in the year up to September 2019. That’s not huge. I am sure it is not profitable for BT.

“But the phone kiosk is still in active use and should be maintained.”

The councillor, who represents the area, says that it is wrong to assume that everyone has a working mobile telephone with a signal.

Mr Boddington believes that the telephone box is used by people to book taxis

“The growing assumption is that everyone has immediate access to a working mobile phone,” he said.

“If that was the case, this phone box would not have been used more than 400 times in a year. The kiosk is adjacent to the town taxi rank. Very often there is not a taxi on the stand.

“That might be part of the reason for the calls. But when we were painting the Ludlow Art Mural in the autumn of 2018.

I also saw lots of people using the phone and it was clear that few were booking taxis.

“Communication is vital to our modern world. To get access to health, to job opportunities and to friends. The reality is that not everyone has access to a working mobile phone all the time.

“That’s why we need to keep this phone box in place and working.”