Phone boxes turn green to charge mobiles

The first of six boxes was unveiled on Tottenham Court Road this week. The service is free to use although users will be shown adverts as they wait for their phone to charge. Many of the UK’s red telephone boxes have largely fallen into disuse although some are being revived as libraries or being fitted with medical equipment.
The boxes have had a makeover for the project – painted green and fitted with a roof-mounted 86cm solar panel. Inside there are a variety of charging stations for different models of phone and a screen which shows adverts. The advertising screen is reinforced to deter vandals and the boxes are maintained daily and locked overnight.
The project was the brainchild of two geography students turned entrepreneurs Harold Craston and Kirsty Kenny. Both studied at the London School of Economics (LSE) and were interested in finding new ways to use public spaces. "I lived next to a phone box in my second year at uni and walked past it every day. I thought, ‘There are 8,000 of these lying unused in London and we must be able to find a use for them,’" explained Mr Craston.