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Ryde Heritage Action Zone throws light on the town’s quirkiest gallery

Ryde Heritage Action Zone has thrown some light on the town’s quirkiest gallery as part of the on-going project to revitalise the high street.
Funding from Ryde HAZ has paid for lighting in the town’s smallest but most perfectly formed gallery space.

Re:Box is Ryde’s classic Kiosk No. 6 red phone box on Lind Street reimagined as a tiny but mighty art gallery which now inhabits the space.
Ryde Town Council purchased the phone box for £1, and then turned it over to creative locals photographer Zoe Barker and writer Anmarie Bowler.
They were determined to give it a new and lasting life. Decommissioned but ripe with potential, the box now hosts compelling visual work by Island artists and community groups. Thanks to funding from Ryde HAZ worth £2,500 the former phone box is now lit up at night so residents and visitors can enjoy the spectacle.

Zoe explained: ““Re:Box is a positive public beacon that repurposes, reinvents and renews an unused public utility – reclaiming it for the enjoyment of residents and artists alike.”

“Kiosk No. 6 (K6) phone boxes, designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, were introduced in 1935 in celebration of King George V’s Silver Jubilee. The iconic design informs its latest re:incarnation as an art gallery. Its shape, silhouette colour and lettering praised and preserved.”

The K6 telephone kiosk is one of Britain’s most recognisable pieces of industrial design. Around 60,000 were installed between 1936 and 1968 so it’s a familiar sight across thecountry. There are 3,200 K6 telephone kiosks on the National Heritage List for England thanks to their special architectural design interest, including the Lind Street phone box which is listed at Grade II.
Martin Gibson, Newport High Street Heritage Action Zone Project Manager, said the HAZ was delighted to be able to support the creative re-imagining of the phone box.
“Ryde is such a creative place and it is pleasing to be able to support a project like this that is sure to bring a smile to the faces of those who visit the gallery.
“It’s important for iconic structures such as phone boxes to be preserved and given a second lease of life, while also giving local artists a quirky place to exhibit their work.”

Zoe has been an Island photographer for many years and Anmarie is the founder/editor of Brevity, The Isle of Wight’s Literary Handbill
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Find out more about Re:Box here –