Plans to remove 20 phone boxes across North Devon are being put to residents.

The phone box in Forches Avenue is one 20 in North Devon which could be removed. Picture: Matt SmartThe phone box in Forches Avenue is one 20 in North Devon which could be removed. Picture: Matt Smart

North Devon Council is carrying out the consultation on behalf of BT, which has put forward the proposals.

Use of phone boxes is estimated to have fallen by 90 per cent across the UK over the last decade, with 98 per cent of the UK having either 3G or 4G mobile coverage.

The phone boxes slated for removal are:

- Derby Road, Barnstaple

- Forches Avenue, Barnstaple

- Goodleigh

- Church Meadow, Landkey

- The Square, Swimbridge

- Halsey Lake, Loxhore

- Slade Valley Road, Ilfracombe

- Old Railway Station, Woolacombe

- Kentisbury

- King Street, Combe Martin

- Knowstone

- Lynbridge

- Parracombe

- Newtown

- Molland

- Wallingbrook Cross, Chulmleigh

- Side Moor picnic site, East Knowstone

Of the 20 phone boxes, nine have not been used at all in the last 12 months, and four more have been used five times or less.

The most used is the phone box in Derby Road, which has had 142 calls, while the Landkey phone box in Church Meadow had 48.

The consultation will also give the local communities the opportunity to adopt a traditional red 'heritage' phone box and make it a community asset.

North Devon Council leader, Councillor David Worden, said: "We have already contacted parish councils for their views, however we want to know what local residents think as well.

"I would like to hear from as many local residents as possible to find out whether they agree or disagree with the proposed phone boxes being removed and the reasons why.

"It doesn't take long to provide your opinion and it doesn't need to be a lengthy response, it will however help us provide a picture to BT of what the people of North Devon think about their proposals."

The council is coordinating responses for BT and will respond on a case by case basis for each phone box on whether the removal is agreed with, objected to, or whether the community wishes to adopt the phone box.

Comments can be made to the council until September 27 by emailing planningcomments@northdevon.gov.uk, with the subject 'Phone box removal - ref.00033', or by post to the Strategic Development and Planning department at the council's Lynton House address.