A postcard from Mid Wales

There is a red phone box on the mountain between Tregaron and Llanwrtyd at Nantymaen, where the Tregaron-Abergwesyn mountain road crosses the Camddwr valley.

A buoy of brilliant red in a vast ocean of muddy green and brown, this now defunct phone box is the only distinctive landmark for miles around.

Head west by bike from Beulah and the phone box stands at the intersection of the steep climb up and over to Tregaron, and a left turn further into the wilderness towards the high and winding roads along the Llyn Brianne reservoir.

Locals, cyclists and walkers who traverse these mountains rely on it for their bearings. There’s no 4G up here.

“Past the red phone box on your left, then take the next left up to Abergwesyn” might be a typical direction, if you are lucky enough to encounter anything but a sheep in this boggy desert.

BT announced at the end of last year that it could be decommissioned, questioning the worth of a phone box in the middle of nowhere without an active line.

The announcement was greeted with consternation among local folk however, and a campaign was triggered to save the red phone box at Nantymaen.

News of the case can be hard to come by. The last we heard, a local farmer had offered to buy the box from BT for a nominal sum, he like many others not willing to countenance the possibility of its removal.

It’s fate remains uncertain. At the time of writing however, the red phone box at Nantymaen still stands in place.

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