Parish Clerks Network

Telephone Kiosk

The K1 Mark 236 at Tyneham today is the replacement bought by the film company.

In 2012, eighty three years after a K1 was first erected on the site, the kiosk is having a complete makeover. Thanks to the invaluable help of ex-GPO engineer Ian Jolly the Tyneham K1 will soon boast authentic fittings and wartime notices and will look much as it did when the last villager left the valley on 19 December 1943.

The photographs below show:

  1. the kiosk stripped of all its fittings being tested for a new hardwood door on 16 Aug 2012
  2. with a fresh coat of paint and renovated roof decorations in Sep 12
  3. the painted door and windows being installed on 12 Oct 2012
  4. ex-GPO engineer Ian Jolly admiring the restored kiosk complete with interior fittings on 20 Oct 2012

… installed in 1929

… lying abandoned in 1981

… restored in 1983

… destroyed in 1985

The original kiosk …

Tyneham got its first public telephone kiosk during the winter of 1929. Before this date the villagers would keep in touch with the outside world by telegram or later by using the telephone in the back room of the Post Office.

Tyneham Valley was evacuated during the second world war and for the next forty years the abandoned kiosk was left to its fate, hidden under the shade of self seeded trees and disappearing under the sea of undergrowth which had consumed most of the village.

In the early 1980’s, prolonged protest and campaigning resulted in the public being granted increased access to the Army Ranges. In 1983 the kiosk was restored as part of a massive clear up programme but with the incorrect K1 roof decoration.

During the filming of ‘Comrades’ in 1985 an accident resulted in the kiosk being completely destroyed.

The replacement kiosk …

… pictured in 2008

© Photo courtesy of Nicholas Mutton

… testing for size


More about kiosk designs…

The K1 was Britain’s first standard kiosk. Between 1921 and 1927 three different versions of this phone box were designed by the General Post Office, all with the same reinforced concrete body and wooden door. The kiosk at Tyneham is the third and final version.

During this period the GPO had great difficulty persuading local authorities to accept a standard design. A variety of styles had sprung up since public phone boxes had first appeared on our streets at the turn of the century.

Rustic wooden booths in rural districts, workmanlike galvanised iron for the dockside. Eastbourne seafront boasted two kiosks with thatched roofs! Paintwork was equally creative, ranging from conservative buffs and browns to eye catching vermillion and flame. The GPO had to find a solution to this confusion.

Leading architects were called in to design an attractive, cost effective kiosk which could be made available in all our towns and cities. Post Office Red was to become the standard colour. Eight kiosk designs were introduced between 1921 and 1983.

It was the K6, introduced in 1935 for the Jubilee of George V, that was destined to become a British icon. Known throughout the world as ‘The Red Telephone Box’ it has become part of our national identity.

‘The Red Telephone Box’ is increasingly threatened in this age of the mobile phone. British Telecom is attempting to save this important part of our heritage with their ’Adopt a Kiosk’ for a pound scheme. By the beginning of 2012 over 1500 communities were taking care of their local box turning them into everything from art galleries to libraries.

Further information from


… looking tired in 2011

© Photo courtesy of David Dixon

Buildings & Places:

Tyneham Village

Double Cottages

Gardener’s Cottage

Gwyle Cottages

Laundry Cottages

Museum Cottage

Post Office Row


Rectory Cottages

Telephone Kiosk

The Ponds

Tyneham Church

Tyneham Churchyard

Tyneham Farm

Tyneham House

Tyneham School

Village Pond

Village Tap


Coastguard Station

Fern Hollow

Gate Cottages

Hill Cottage

Mintern’s Cottage

Rose Cottage

Sea Cottage


The Bungalow

Worbarrow Bay

Worbarrow Tout



North Egliston


RAF Brandy Bay

South Egliston


… fitting door and windows

… with interior fittings

… a fresh coat of paint

… the kiosk fully restored on 20 Oct 2012