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BT sends iconic red telephone box out to sea

A classic red telephone box has been installed on a Royal Navy battleship so sailors have a little taste of home when navigating the seven seas.

The BT phone box was put on the HMS Westminster while docked on the River Thames to commemorate the 75th birthday celebrations for HMS Belfast.

The K6 kiosk was brought aboard after making its way along The Thames on a barge and then being hoisted aboard. The box will be used as the quartermaster’s telephone whenever the Portsmouth-based warship is in port, both in the UK and abroad. High winds at the start of the week in Portsmouth made it impossible for the kiosk to be loaded aboard the frigate before she set sail to London.

Steven Hughes, chief executive of BT Payphones, said: “It’s fantastic to see our red kiosk joining the ranks of the Royal Navy and I think it already looks very much at home.

“HMS Westminster travels the globe representing the UK and helps support people who find themselves in dire emergencies. We are really delighted to provide a kiosk that can be used by the crew when they are docked.

“Our red kiosks really capture the public’s imagination and many have been adopted around the UK and used in unusual ways. But being aboard a working navy ship is going to take some beating.”

Lieutenant Commander Mickey Rooney, weapon engineering officer on HMS Westminster, said: “We couldn’t be prouder to be carrying an icon of the country’s high streets as we protect the UK’s interests worldwide.”

“Carrying the phone box to each and every nation we hope will bring the very visual reassurance that Britain is on hand and inevitably all will be well.” 

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