public telephone boxes (Supplementary) [4]

Session date: 
April 4, 2001
Question By: 
Richard Barnes
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Oftel has a requirement that there is a direct relationship between the number of telephones which use cards and those that take cash; yet there is evidence in areas across London that payphones taking cash are used to support, and indeed finance, the drugs trade. Would you, in your approach to Oftel, be prepared to discuss with the MPS and the MPA where the siting and use of different forms of telephone boxes could be used?

As for advertising, again, particularly around King's Cross, advertising on phone booths blocks CCTV which is being used to crack down on the drugs trade. One can see this in the control centres down there. It is regrettable that advertising for the police recruitment campaign is among the worst offenders, blocking out CCTV and covering crack cocaine dealing. If you do approach Oftel about advertising, would you also be prepared to discuss with the MPS and the MPA what their views are and where it can be most appropriately used?

Supplementary To: 


Answer for public telephone boxes (Supplementary) [4]

Answer for public telephone boxes (Supplementary) [4]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I know from my own constituency of one instance in which drug dealers based themselves around a payphone and made life in the area hell for my constituents. It seems to me that the rapid deployment of CCTV by the police for surveillance is the best way forward on this. I do not need to consult them, because the boss is sitting there, and I am sure he will take the message back.