British Telephone Booths Get a New Look

It's a shame about those great old British telephone boxes. They used to be an iconic symbol of Britishness and now they are just places to post sex shop ads--or worse.

Having removed them all, BT, the telephone company, is now "celebrating" their loss by having artists paint them for a charity event: ChildLine’s 25th anniversary. Some 80 artists have decorated plastic replicas and they will be placed around town and sold, much like those cows and moose that invaded Canadian cities a few years ago.

But they are cute. Artists, including such notables as Sir Peter Blake, Zaha Hadid, Zandra Rhodes and a host of innovative lesser-knowns, have taken brush to hand. Each artist is customising a full-sized, fibreglass replica of Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's original K6 telephone kiosk, which was introduced in 1936 to commemorate King George V's Silver Jubilee.

Big Ben has a special message: the times on the clocks read 08:00 and 11:11, representing ChildLine's telephone number 0800 1111.

Dial M for Monster is a knitted, crocheted and hand sewn creature created from around 100 balls of yarn. It was made by a TreeHugger favourite, Deadly Knitshade.

This artist imagines a world "filled with plants and animals, they happily play in their confined environments."

This one is based on a poem: This sweet scent of memory, green hills and pleasant seems the cool dew in distant dreams of birdsong, nostalgia bathes the scene, And my heart belongs to thee.

You can't beat that pigeon, poised on top of the booth.

British Telephone Booths Get a New Look
They aren't the real thing, but artists have had a great time decorating them for charity.

Related Content on