Labour Refuses to Help Save Phone Boxes

Cllr Ed Hopper (Thames Ward) has been working closely with local people and residents associations CADRA and EGRA to save a number of heritage red phone boxes across Caversham.

Cllr Hopper said "When I heard from RBC's planning department that BT was proposing to remove a number of phone boxes across the town I contacted residents living near to the red phone box near the old Arthur Clark site on Albert Road to discuss the process for adopting the box as a community resource. I also spoke to CADRA about this phone box and EGRA about boxes in Emmer Green."

It quickly became clear that although the process appears relatively straightforward it is something which needs the assistance of the local authority or a registered charity (which neither CADRA or EGRA are) so Cllr Hopper agreed to ask RBC to investigate adopting boxes where local residents agreed to take on the maintenance.

At RBC's Policy Committee on 5th Dec 2016 Cllr Hopper was very disappointed that RBC declined to assist the local residents citing financial constraints. Cllr Hopper comments "Considering that the boxes only cost £1 to adopt, and doing so would not increase the Council's insurance costs, I was very disappointed that RBC declined to help local residents to create what could become valuable community resources."

Cllr Hopper added "I will continue to work with local people and residents associations to see if any other avenues are open to save these highly valued heritage assets and would welcome assistance from any charitable bodies that may wish to work with me on this."