TWO traditional red phone boxes in Bradford city centre could be ringing the changes as they're turned into mini shops or cafes.

A Brighton-based charitable trust has applied to transform the boxes on Rawson Square after the success of a similar scheme in the seaside city.

Thinking Outside the Box supports homeless projects by giving a percentage of its earnings from the retail uses of converted phone boxes.

It has the support of Miles Broe Architecture, which is acting as an agent for Steve Beeken who has lodged a planning application with Bradford Council.

A design statement from Mr Broe said: "The K2 and K6 red phone boxes are iconic pieces of both engineering and architecture.

"The aim of this proposal is to redefine their usage to suit modern day needs and requirements without compromising their external appearance on the street scene."

The application is part of a scheme to convert a number of disused BT kiosks into small retail outlets, selling products such as ice cream and coffee.

Mr Broe said: "The formula is simple and Miles Broe Architecture brings their planning experience to bear on rolling out these proposals nationwide.

"Working in league with the charity Thinking Outside the Box, British Telecom and registered charities to safeguard many dilapidated and misused listed phone kiosks, the charity will provide training for jobs within the programme."

The units would be staffed by two people and open everyday of the week selling either pre-prepared packed, cold drinks, ice cream or hot beverages.

"Externally, the phone boxes will remain painted in BT phone box red, and a rolling maintenance programme will see the kiosks refurbished every two years.

"The maintenance programme will entail a complete overhaul, to include all exterior and interior paint and associated works."

The boxes, which are owned by BT, would have a unit inside, including a swivel-out basin and drop-down seat.

The scheme aims to save traditional phone boxes by finding new and innovative uses for them as people increasingly use mobile phones.

A similar project was granted planning permission by Brighton and Hove City Council in September last year to change two phones boxes in Brighton and changes have also been allowed in Plymouth and Nottingham.

The Council is expected to make a decision by December 8.