Harbour Arm telephone box removed after complaints of graffiti, rubbish dumping and ‘toilet use’

Gone for good Photo David Townsend

The red telephone box on Margate’s Stone Pier – also known as the Harbour Arm – has been removed after complaints of it being vandalised and used for rubbish dumping.

The payphone was taken away yesterday (January 16). BT no longer owned the box. Its upkeep was being looked after by Margate Charter Trustees.

A Thanet council spokesperson said: “We received complaints about the poor condition of the telephone box on the Harbour Arm. It had been graffitied and had rubbish dumped inside.

Photo David Townsend

“We investigated the complaints and those responsible for the upkeep of the telephone box were contacted and given the option to improve its appearance, by removing the graffiti and rubbish. They chose the alternative option which was to remove it from the Harbour Arm.

“The Harbour Arm is Grade II listed and within the Margate Conservation area and by removing the telephone box, the harm to the amenity of the area has been resolved.”

Margate Charter Trustees said they were asked by Thanet council to remove the phonebox after complaints that people were using it as a toilet.


  1. I think all phone boxes should be removed as they are not used anymore , As for vandals i dont agree , where is one meant to have a quick pee , TDC have shut all the toilets that i used to use , maybe for the better due to the drug takers or others that use them for other things.
    Maybe the phone boxes should be replaced with like in London a loo at a charge of course its worth a quid for a pee if one is busting .
    Many are self employed be it cab drivers , delivery drivers , postmen etc , so where does one have a quick one, in the side road , alley.

      • If one has a landline one can phone from home. It’s very often safe to walk the streets at night, which is just as well seeing how early it gets dark in winter.

  2. That was a quick convenience now wasn’t it? Just remove it and dump it elsewhere as an answer to a bit of grafitti and rubbish! This company will not spend a penny on the harbour for the people of Thanet and tourism. Quite sad that everything is being removed instead of looked after. Our history wiped out. How much would they have needed to dab a splash of red paint over it and replace the glass. A lock on the door would stop fly-tippers and piss takers!

  3. I see phone boxes around Scotland used as defibrillator holder units while retaining a bit of history,one toilet for the size of margate seafront is ridiculous, and the filth that is constantly clogging up the gent’s is disgusting,maybe that tells a story more of the people using the facilities

  4. TDC Give us our public toilets back and stop closing them, selling them to developers or bulldozing them. Where the hell are we suppose to go now? What will it take for you to give us the toilets back?

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