The very first telephone box in Colne

EVOCATIVE SCENE: Hyde Park in 1927. (S)
EVOCATIVE SCENE: Hyde Park in 1927. (S)
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A truly historic, column picture this week with an evocative, Colne scene dating back to 1927.

Yes, here is Hyde Park, named after the mill-owner and newspaper entrepreneur Robert Hyde, who published just a stone’s throw away the very first copy of “The Colne and Nelson Times” in 1874.

This rare photo was kindly presented to me recently by Jill Pengelly, a most notable local historian, whose research skills at Colne Library have become imposing indeed.

Jill’s picture, taken at nightfall, clearly shows Colne’s first telephone kiosk erected in Autumn 1927, followed by two more at Primet Hill and Lidgett.

These are the very first telephone boxes designed for Great Britain by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott R.A who named them “The K1” in 1924, costing the general post office just £40 each.

In 1936, Hyde Park’s K1 Box was replaced by the classic “Jubilee K6” red telephone box, which lasted until the mid 1990s, when a bland, American-style, aluminium box was installed. Today, of the iconic, once 62,000 red “K6” telephone boxes, only 1,600 still survive!