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K6 at Sy 91644 7984, Kimmeridge

Description: K6 at Sy 91644 7984

Grade: II
Date Listed: 20 March 2012
English Heritage Building ID: 1407576

OS Grid Reference: SY9164479842
OS Grid Coordinates: 391644, 79842
Latitude/Longitude: 50.6182, -2.1195

Locality: Kimmeridge
Local Authority: Purbeck District Council
County: Dorset
Country: England
Postcode: BH20 5PH

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Listing Text


K6 Telephone kiosk designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott.

Reason for Listing

The telephone box in Kimmeridge is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

* Design: an unusual survival of a kiosk with a grey paint scheme, adopted for areas of natural and architectural beauty;

* Historic interest: an iconic example of industrial design, showing Giles Gilbert Scott's adaptation of Neoclassical forms for a modern technological function;

* Group value: it has strong visual relationship with the Grade II listed former post office opposite.


The K6 telephone kiosk is a milestone of C20 industrial design. The K6 was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott in 1935 for the General Post Office, on the occasion of King George V's Silver Jubilee. The K6 was a development from his earlier highly successful K2 telephone kiosk design of 1924, of Neo-classical inspiration. The K6 was more streamlined aesthetically, more compact and more cost-effective to mass produce. Sir Giles Gilbert Scott (1880-1960) was one of the most important of modern British architects; his many celebrated commissions include the Anglican cathedral of Liverpool and Battersea power station. The K2 and K6 telephone kiosks can be said to represent a very thoughtful adaptation of architectural tradition to contemporary technological requirements. Well over 70,000 K6s were eventually produced. In the 1960s many were replaced with a new kiosk type. But many still remain, and continue to be an iconic feature on Britain's streetscapes.

The standard colour used for telephone kiosks in rural and urban areas, known as Post Office Red 539, was selected to match the colour of Post Office letter boxes. However, in certain areas of natural and architectural beauty where objection was raised to the standard red, one alterative colour was permitted - dark battleship grey with glazing bars picked out in red. It is likely that the grey paint scheme was selected for the K6 in Kimmeridge, which is situated within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, so that the kiosk would be of a similar colour to the Purbeck stone used in the construction of most of the local buildings.


The K6 is a standardised design made of cast iron, with long horizontal glazing in the door and sides and with the crowns situated on the top panels being applied not perforated. There are rectangular white display signs, reading TELEPHONE beneath the shallow-curved roof. This kiosk is painted 'battleship grey'. It retains its glass windows and has modernised internal equipment.

Source: English Heritage

Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.