Banbury’s phone box library’s phone box book

Tom Christy with his new book and the inspiration behind it NNL-180226-101848001
Tom Christy with his new book and the inspiration behind it NNL-180226-101848001

The brains behind Banbury’s phone box library has now gone one better, writing a children’s book about the diminutive book sharing scheme .

Tom Christy, head of art at Middleton Cheney’s Chenderit School, petitioned BT for use of the box situated outside St John’s Church on South Bar, after they had served an eviction notice on it in 2015, siting health and safety concerns.

Working with Banbury Town Council and engineering firm Hawkins, BT agreed to provide, fit and install an iconic red phone box next to the original to house this unique community resource.

Almost three years on and still going strong, it’s story has been the inspiration for Tom’s new children’s book, ‘Banbury’s Phone-box Library’.

Tom said: “I wanted to organise a phone box Library story time event for parents and kids during the summer holidays, the sort of thing 
that the real Banbury Library does so brilliantly, and my wife suggested that I write an original story to make it more special.

He added: “Writing a children’s story is something I’d never attempted before, and it took a ridiculously long time to get right.

“Centring the story on the phone-box made the challenge even harder, I found myself writing a story where my hero couldn’t move or talk.”

Tom, who also illustrates the book, originally printed it as gifts for family members but it has took on a life of its own.

Tom said: “The response has been staggering. I thought there might be a few people who would be interested, but have had to print more copies to meet the demand.”

Copies can be bought from the library’s Facebook page.