NCC is seeking parish councillor’s views on the proposed closure of BT phone boxes located in the parish.
Telephone Box No: Proposal to remove phone box 01830520676
Location: PCO PCO1 Elsdon Newcastle Upon Tyne NE19 1AA
Application No. 20/02028/BT
As you may already be aware BT is currently undertaking a programme of proposed public payphone removals. The above public payphone in Northumberland which has a very low usage level and has been identified by BT for removal under full consultation. A consultation notice for the relevant payphone has been displayed to ensure that the local community are fully informed.
NCC acts as the ‘local organisation/Relevant Public Body ’, as identified in the Ofcoms: ‘Guidance on procedures for the removal of public call boxes’. The ‘local organisation’ gathers information to help make an informed decision about the removal of public call boxes.
In order to do this do this NCC will seek the views of the local community by carrying out a consultation process- this process is not prescribed by Ofcom-although it is suggested that parish councils be informed which call boxes have been identified in their area for closure and their input sought . I shall be pleased to receive your observations within 21 days of the receipt of this letter (dated 2 July, 2020). You can reply with your observations to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to the views and opinions expressed by parish councils and individuals- BT recommend that the local organisation look at the area that surrounds the box and the people who live locally and consider the following:
Who lives there - Is it predominantly private rented, or council housing, - this might suggest residents on a lower income without access to mobile and fixed telephones.
Number of households – There might be concerns about alternative access to telephone services for low population densities.
Emergency calls – especially in those areas where there is limited, or low mobile signal.
General mobile phone coverage- in remote rural areas phone coverage is often weak.
After the initial consultation NCC will weight up the views that have been received and makes their first decision, this is called the First Notice – this information will be published on NCC Planning Website for a further consultation process that will run until 11th August 2020
Having considered all the evidence NCC can exercise a right of veto to the BT proposal, this has to be supported by sufficient evidence identified through the consultation process.
NCC will consider the responses to the First Notice, and make their final decision. A Final Notice will be published, setting out their final decision by 28th September 2020
Please send your responses to https://publicaccess.northumberland.gov.uk/onlineapplications// quoting the application reference 20/02028/BT.