Villagers create pub in phone box
Published 10/07/2011 | 09:24
Villagers angered by the loss of their historic local pub have turned a redundant red telephone box into an alehouse for a night.
Locals in Shepreth, Cambridgeshire, opened "The Dog and Bone" to coincide with their annual fete this weekend.
A carpenter created a triangular-shaped "bar" which allowed the barman to stand inside, drinkers to line up outside, and also jammed the phone kiosk door open.
Staff pulled pints from a barrel underneath the bar and on Friday drinkers queued down the pavement before gathering around the kiosk to sup and chat.
"We've lost our pub, The Plough, but the parish council has bought the redundant phone box from BT for a pound," said villager Alistair Janson, who helped create The Dog and Bone.
"We normally have a get-together on the Friday night before the start of the fete weekend, so we thought why not think out of the box and drink in the phone box?
"It took a little imagination and a bit of cleaning - and we got some expert help from staff at The British Queen pub in Meldreth, the next village.
"We offered beer and three flavours of crisps. We gave everything away but people made donations to village hall funds. We must have had 60 or 70 people there. It was great. When the beer ran out at about 10.30pm we called time."
He added: "We might do it again sometime. The powers that be should take note. In Shepreth we can have a good night out in a phone box - imagine what we could do if we got our pub back. Anyone who thinks that a pub isn't viable in this village should think again."
Villagers are campaigning to stop The Plough, which closed after being turned into a restaurant, being converted into a house. They want planners at South Cambridgeshire District Council to rule that the building, a popular haunt with Second World War pilots, must be used as a pub.