AHEAD of the iconic red phone box turning 100 years of age, BT has revealed that more than 160 of its kiosks are currently up for grabs across Scotland.

And 32 of them are in the Scottish Borders, more that in any other region in the country.

Architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott designed the first incarnation of the famous red phone box for a competition in 1924.

In recent years, however, with 98% of the adult population now using a mobile phone, and significant improvements to mobile coverage, there has been a huge decline in the usage of payphones across the UK.

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There are now around 2,200 remaining working payphones across Scotland, around 470 of which are in traditional red kiosks.

Across the UK, around 20,000 working payphones remain in operation. The number of phone boxes across the UK peaked in the 1990s at around 100,000.

BT is now urging communities across Scotland to continue to take advantage of its kiosk adoption scheme to help transform its underused red phone boxes into other purposes.

Since BT introduced its Adopt a Kiosk programme in 2008, around 550 phone boxes have been taken on by communities across Scotland for just £1 each.

Across the UK, more than 7,200 have been adopted so far. The kiosks can be adopted by registered charities, community councils and local authorities.

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Redundant phone boxes have been adopted and turned into a range of facilities over the years, from defibrillator units and libraries, to mini art galleries and local museums.

BT is continuing to review its remaining estate of payphones, removing those that are no longer being used, in line with rules set out by Ofcom. Ofcom revised its guidance last year on payphone removals, reflecting improvements made in mobile coverage and the number of calls made from individual payphones each year.

Michael Smy, Head of Street at BT, said: “With the vast majority of people now using mobile phones, and significant improvements to mobile coverage across the UK, we’ve continued to see a big drop in the number of calls made from payphones.

“That’s why we’re continuing to review our payphones estate, making sure we're prioritising the removal of those not being used, in line with Ofcom’s latest guidance.

“With the iconic red kiosk about to turn 100, it's a great opportunity to remind communities that would still like to retain their local kiosk to take it on for just £1 through our Adopt a Kiosk scheme. We’ve already seen some great kiosk conversions across the UK that have become valuable community assets.”

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The Borders kiosks are located at the following locations: Near Manderston in Buxley, Duns, Opposite the Village Hall, Preston, Duns, Telephone Exchange Cockburnspath, Princes Street Hawick, Rosebank Road, Hawick, Outside Keepers Cottage, Hawick, Carters Cottage, Newmill on Teviot, Hawick, Main Street Kirk Yetholm, Kelso, Village Green, High Street, Town Yetholm, Makerstoun, Kelso, Telephone Exchance, Old Stage Road, Fountainhall, Edinburgh Road, Peebles, Eddleston, Kirkton Manor House, Peebles, Southbound JunctionA7 Lindean Layby, Junction Raebrn Meadow, Bleachfield Road, Selkirk, A708 outside Glencafe, Selkirk, Telephone Exchance, Ettrickbridge, Bonjedward, Market Place, Jedburgh, High Street, Jedburgh, Howden Road, Jedburgh, Near Ayton, Lamberton, Lawyers Brae, Galashiels, Smiths Road Darnick, Market Square, Melrose, Priors Walk, Melrose, Buccleuch Street, Melrose, Main Street, Newstead, Glen Post Office, High Street, Innerleithen, Ballantyne Street, Innerleithen and Galashiels Road, Walkerburn.