Tuesday 16 January 2018

Phone box becomes book exchange

A phone box in Bucklebury has been transformed into a book exchange
A phone box in Bucklebury has been transformed into a book exchange

A classic English phone box that found fame in the run-up to the royal wedding has found a new calling as a book exchange.

The old red kiosk in Kate Middleton's home village of Bucklebury in Berkshire featured in scores of television reports as the world prepared for the royal nuptials.

Villagers decided to ring the changes, turning the humble phone box into a book exchange, and the Duchess of Cambridge's former piano teacher debuted two songs penned to celebrate.

The sun shone on Union flag bunting as the miniature library was honoured with a grand opening. Around 150 villagers aged between seven and 80-something enjoyed tea, cakes and wine and a two songs to mark the occasion.

Composer and music teacher Daniel Nicholls, who taught Kate, her sister Pippa, brother James and mother Carole, already has a hit under his belt.

He wrote A Song For Kate (And William) as a wedding present for the couple and was rewarded with a letter of thanks from the royals. His newest efforts, entitled The Ballad of Bucklebury, tells the story of a phone box and the books it now houses.

Residents of the home counties village bought the decommissioned kiosk from BT for the reasonable sum of £1 and transformed it into a book exchange.

To make it even more special, villagers decorated the box with a timeline of Bucklebury events on the panes of glass, from the Middle Ages to the royal wedding.

Mr Nicholls said it was "a weird, special English event" and it the ballad in Bucklebury's honour was well received. "I don't want to blow my own horn but people were saying they thought it was really good."

Between 15 and 20 members of Enharmonic choir performed the verses and will soon have another new composition to rehearse. Mr Nicholls has already penned a song to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. "I have sent it to Buckingham Palace and we will debut it when we have a big village lunch on the day of the jubilee."

Press Association

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