Chance to speak up on pay­phones

Four boxes in Ruther­glen area could go

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Jonathan Ged­des

Four pay­phones in the Ruther­glen area could be switched off as part of a South La­nark­shire pro­gramme by BT with some go­ing days with­out be­ing used.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil are now car­ry­ing out a sur­vey to find out if the pro­posed clo­sures would af­fect the lo­cal com­mu­nity.

The pay­phones listed are on Cru­achan Road, which had 381 calls made over 12 months, Spit­tal Road, which had 334 calls made in 12 months, Main Street/McCal­lum Av­enue which had 98 calls in 12 months and Stonelaw Road, which had 178 calls made over the 12 month pe­riod.

The four phones were used less than three times a day be­tween them dur­ing that pe­riod.

With the rise of mo­bile phones, BT has stated that the over­all use of pay­phones has re­duced by more than 90 per cent in the last decade and there­fore the need to pro­vide pay­phones for emer­gency sit­u­a­tions is fall­ing, with at least 98 per cent of the UK now hav­ing ei­ther 3G or 4G cov­er­age.

As there is net­work cov­er­age, it is pos­si­ble to call emer­gency ser­vices even when there is no credit or no cov­er­age from mo­bile providers.

Two of the boxes are in the Ruther­glen South ward and Coun­cil­lor Ger­ard Killen said no- one had ap­proached him ex­press­ing con­cerns.

He added: “Given the huge de­cline in over­all use of pay phones I don’t an­tic­i­pate much re­sponse but, since two of the bet­ter used ones are in my ward, I’m en­cour­ag­ing any­one with an in­ter­est to com­plete the sur­vey on the coun­cil’s web­site.”

In Au­gust 2016, BT posted a no­tice on each of the pay­phones pro­posed for re­moval, ad­vis­ing of their pro­pos­als.

Un­der Of­com reg­u­la­tions, South La­nark­shire Coun­cil now has re­spon­si­bil­ity for car­ry­ing out a con­sul­ta­tion with the lo­cal com­mu­nity on BT’s pro­pos­als.

BT re­quires jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for any objection made to the re­moval of a pay­phone, such as there be­ing no mo­bile cov­er­age in a par­tic­u­lar area; the pay­phone be­ing well used by res­i­dents or the pass­ing pub­lic or it may be lo­cated close to an ac­ci­dent blackspot.

More in­for­ma­tion, in­clud­ing how to take part in the sur­vey, can be found at http:// www. south­la­nark­

The closing date for com­ments and com­plet­ing the sur­vey is Tues­day, Oc­to­ber 18.

Last call BT want to get rid of this phone box on Stonelaw Road along with three others in the Ruther­glen area

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