The Dispatch - Our local paper are currently running a series of readers' photos which they have been invited to submit to the paper. Some are a lot of fun and some quite 'arty' so I thought I would submit a photo featuring our own 'El Tel' during the Wimbledon fortnight. The reason for this is that the garden looked particularly lovely and the deep purple clematis was looking really quite fabulous! Overall the composition is rather splendid and did feature on our front page for a little while. I make no apologies for featuring this picture again here on this page because ........ I have just received an e-mail from the Dispatch asking why I have a telephone kiosk in the garden. Here is a copy of the correspondence starting with my submission and the reason for it (and the person sending the photo has to tell the Dispatch a bit about themselves), the response and my response to the query - all photos submitted and featured can be found within this article or in a reduced format on the sidebar.
Original e-mail dated 5th July 2011 :
"I am attaching three photos of my garden during this last Wimbledon Finals w/e - the beauty of nature made up for the disappointments of yet another British failure to produce a Champion.
My name is Anna Ludlow, I live on the Beauvale Estate and have been a resident of Hucknall since 1980. I've been medically retired for a year or so now and to come to terms with my decreasing mobility took a web-design course which lets me create beautiful things without having to leave the house and my garden! I've previously worked in the Arts and Media, for the BBC and in theatre so have always had an artistic interest. I've met many famous people in the entertainment world and thought once I might write a book, instead I shall put it all onto my website where art and writing seem to work well. I'm a former 'Biba' girl and still drive a classic mini which draws many an admiring glance when people pass the front of my house (when avoiding the roadside potholes of course!) I have a significant birthday coming up next year and am planning all sorts of delightful things to celebrate this rite of passage. I'm an animal lover and my interests include watching tennis and reading - such a luxury now that I have the time.
Oh yes, and that telephone box is in my garden!"
The response dated 19th July 2011 :
Just one quick question........WHY do you have a telephone box in your garden?.......
RICHARD SILVERWOOD, Editor, Hucknall and Bulwell Dispatch. (Tel: 0115 9536549)"
And the last word is with me on 19th July 2011 :
Sorry - actually I've been fascinated by them since I can remember - so quintessentially English I suppose and when they started being decommissioned way back in the 70s I vowed I would rescue one one day. Happily for me my second (current) husband didn't think this was quite as barmy as some of my other ideas or causes and when he saw a story in the NEP about a chap in Ruddington emigrating and selling off his chattels (one of which was a red telephone kiosk) he decided to surprise me by taking me to see the kiosk and the seller. The original owner had done what I had hoped to do, but was not in a position to at the time, and rescued a kiosk with the intention of restoring it and placing it as a working telephone box in his nightclub - but never got round to it so as a consequence it was still in his outhouse (on its side) in the same position as when it was delivered on the day - covered in a very dusty blanket. Apparently there were three of us after the kiosk, but because we had taken the time to go and speak to him and promised we would restore rather than convert to a cocktail bar or shower he sold it to us.
The real problem after that was getting the thing shifted into the garden. We ended up getting a safe specialist to transport the kiosk (no other transporter would touch it), then it had to be hoisted over the Annie Holgate Schools fence (bottle of whisky for the caretaker) and nearly came a cropper, but did manage to get it into the garden and then had to upend it onto a trolley to move it to its final position onto a concrete stand (oh yes, whilst digging that out we hit a soakaway and had to have that repaired) all this happened on one of the wettest summers to date - our frogs loved their second pond which was clay based and they all changed into little orange versions of themselves, so we had to get them out before the concreting started. Timing was everything as we had to have the concrete dry and ready on the day of delivery.
Since then we have restored it fully - but after having a sign 'You may telephone from here' which had been attached to a post in the garden nicked we decided that although we have all the cosmetic stuff - board, mirror, A&B box, until we have some way of securing the box and the items, the interior restoration will have to wait.
Attached photo with stolen sign (to order I would imagine although I have no proof) and two winter ones showing just how fabulous a telephone kiosk can be (and yes, we do call it El Tel).
Hope that helps."
So watch this space to see if we get published ........................ we did! (twice)
From Ruddington to Hucknall - the full story here:
Talk Through - Issue 16 November 1996
Not for the first time have we been in print, or should I say our connection with our Telephone Kiosk 'El Tel.' We appeared in print for the first time in 'Talk Through' which was the 'Newsletter for Nottinghamshire Constabulary Staff' (when Notts. Police was a Constabulary) - more of a magazine than a newsletter - printed on shiny paper and using a blue and black colour scheme - the blue being a shade peculiar to Nottinghamshire Police and used on all their official stationary.
For the full article details please follow this link or click on the heading.
We were lucky enough to receive all three variations of the photographs taken by the police photographers and these are reproduced in this article. One, you may have noticed is also the header for our Kiosk pages and also our home page as we liked them so much. We were particularly lucky to have been able to share an image of our cat, Nephyr as part of the overall composition. More about Nephyr can be found in our Cats section.
Page updated : 16th February 2016
The header on this page consists of the stamp design of the telephone kiosk as copyrighted to the Post Office and our celebrated image as seen in 'Talk THrough'