Westminster Council opposes phone box junk ads

Westminster City Council has raised concern over plans to install 80 phone boxes in locations across the city.

After receiving applications for prior approval from Telecom Company Maximus Networks Ltd the council has lobbied the government for a change in the law to prevent the new boxes being built on many of the most famous roads in the city including Oxford Street, Victoria Street and Baker Street.

The council has argued that the scheme offers little benefit to the public, particularly as the proposed telephone boxes offer no wi-fi or internet connectivity.

Each phone box provides 1.3m x 2m of advertising space and a notice of prior approval leaves councils limited power to prevent the scheme going ahead.

Cllr Daniel Astaire, Cabinet Member for Planning and Public Realm said: “We think this scheme will create ugly advertising hoardings on some of our most iconic streets.

“Maximus is using the popularity of our city for its own gain. Frankly, it’s totally unacceptable and we will do everything in our power to prevent the phones being installed.

“This proposal might have been acceptable in the 1950s but very few people use traditional phone boxes now and the installation of 80 more will serve no community purpose in twenty-first century Westminster.”

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