Phone Box to Book Box

Phone Box to Book Box
Cllr Todd formally opening the box

Snettisham Parish Clerk Simon Bower writes about the new Community Book Box

A new “Community Book Box” was officially opened on Saturday 28th November. The Snettisham Parish Council purchased two red telephone boxes some time ago, and the one in Ingolside is now functioning as a fully-fledged mini-library for residents to exchange and borrow books in a COVID-safe way.

This has been the project of Sally Phillips and her partner Andy, who moved to Snettisham in 2015.

“The phone box looked so sad and unloved it was a project I really wanted to take up. I contacted the PC who agreed to adopt the box from BT on behalf of the village. Once BT removed the telephony it was back to me to start the works. Working full time and a hectic cottage renovation still to complete it was slow progress. That was until 2020 and Covid hit! I was furloughed and suddenly had too much time on my hands.

“Out came the broom and power-washer to clean away years of cobwebs and dirt. Clean and prepped it was ready to paint. I met some lovely people walking past as I painted, and everyone was keen to see it finished.

“Shelving was the next step, which is where my partner Andy came in. Another weekend of building, sanding and oiling saw the shelves complete. I loved filling the completed box with books and had to stop when I found myself putting them in alphabetical order and into genres! Clearly a missed vocation to be a librarian rather than a Project manager!

Web sally phillips

“We have had over 300 likes to the Facebook post on the village page the uptake and enthusiasm has been tremendous. I'm so pleased to have been able to do this and give something back. This is my gift of time to the village. This has been an extraordinary year and one we'll never forget, but it's also a year when communities have pulled together - I hope this can be a 2020 legacy which everyone will enjoy for years to come.”

Cllr Alf Todd, Parish Council Chairman, expressed his thanks to Sally and Andy. “I was really impressed with what they have achieved. We have been so fortunate in the Village in the way people have come together to help the Community over the last few months. This is a perfect example of what can be done when individuals have an idea, and the energy and commitment to put it into action. Hopefully this will be a well-loved, and well-used, reminder of some difficult times. I shall be visiting often.”

Photos: Snettisham Parish Council