Ramshackle phone box transformed into Stray information point
Last updated May 13, 2023
Stray phone box
Cordelia and Harry cut the ribbon at today's opening.

A ramshackle red phone box in Harrogate has been moved and transformed into a history of the Stray.

The disused phone box on the Stray, just off Otley Road, had fallen into a dilapidated state.

So the Stray Defence Association, which safeguards the 200 acres of parkland against building and encroachment, hired a specialist renovation company to uplift it on March 16.

It was restored to its original bright scarlet and moved to a more prominent town centre spot on West Park Stray, where it stood beneath a white cover for several days.

Two children removed the covers at an unveiling ceremony this afternoon to reveal the new-look phone box with panels displaying the history of Harrogate’s Stray and the Stray Defence Association.

Its old position on the Stray, next to Otley Road, has been restored and reseeded to return it to Stray land.

Judy d'Arcy Thompson and Syd Bell

Stray Defence Association chairman Judy d’Arcy Thompson and committee member Syd Bell

Judy D’Arcy Thompson, chairman of the Stray Defence Association, said:

“It is the Stray Defence Association’s hope that it will become a valued part of the West Park street scene and an intriguing and iconic information source for both local people and visitors to Harrogate.”

Today’s unveiling, which was attended by members of the Stray Defence Association, Harrogate In Bloom and Harrogate Civic Society, coincided with the 90th anniversary of the Stray Defence Association, which was formed on May 12, 1933

Cordelia, 7, and Harry, 5, performed the opening by cutting a ribbon to highlight how children are the future custodians of the Stray.

A Stray Defence Association donor paid for the renovation, which was approved by the Duchy of Lancaster and both Harrogate Borough Council and the new North Yorkshire Council.

The phone box being uplifted


Panels on the restored phone box tell the story of the Stray.

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