Colourful Boxes Near Old Street: More Info Needed

By M@ Last edited 84 months ago
Colourful Boxes Near Old Street: More Info Needed


Bit of an information fail here...perhaps you can help redress our ignorance. We stumbled across this series of painted switch boxes in the area south of City Road. It looks like local kids have been brightening up the street furniture. BUT:

  • What is the official terminology for these boxes?
  • What's this area called? St Luke's? East Finsbury? It's the triangle bounded by City Road, Goswell Road and Old Street.
  • Anyone got more information on this inspired bit of street decoration?

Last Updated 09 April 2011


not sure what the technical term for these boxes is, but there are a couple more decorated versions on Borough High Street. One appears to be sponsored by Resonance FM.


We know these boxes as Virgin cabinets, since it is Virgin we ring when the door is hanging open, or missing altogether. We're told that the phone number to ring is given, usefully, inside every cabinet. All of yours look very well kept. Lovely designs, inspired by children's art but probably designed and executed by professionals. One could almost be an entry for your hand-drawn maps of London.


They're called "roadside cabinets".

Will Smith

They've been done throughout this section of EC1 - I think it might have a connection to Toffee Park Youth Club but am not sure.

I noticed a guy who appeared to be a pretty nifty painter painting one just opposite the Britannia pub on Ironmonger Row about 3 months ago. The area's called St Luke's, as far as I am aware.


These were repainted by the New Deal for EC1 project which ends this year. This is one of the final things the project will do and the cabinets are due to be painted black again soon.


They've been doing it in Brisbane for years. Bet there's an Australian behind it...


For more information see:


Reminds me of the artwork adorning the bus shelters of my home town - antipodean, sure, but created by an erstwhile londoner

singing crayon

Its part of the campaign and indeed there is an Austrailian group http://www.urbansmartprojects.... behind it


There's one on Whitecross Street too :)


*These* are called "junction boxes". Roadside cabinets can contain telco stuff but they can also be used for stuff like pumps.

Adam Good

Yeah, I've seen those, there's a few more decorated versions on Borough High Street. And I think it is sponsored by Resonance FM. I'm a bit unsure of what the technical term for them are though? Don't they use them for meter readings?


They are Junction boxes, and they are used for maintenance purposes.