Bells below writing board version Bells above writing board version
With modern style handset With modern style handset

Designed by British Ericsson, the Telephone No. 59 was originally used by the National Telephone Company (known as the NT1). There were two different versions of this phone, one with the bells above the writing desk and one with the bells below.

The telephone was used in C.B.S. and Magneto exchange areas, and had a generator and batteries in the lower compartment.

Circa 1930 the Telephone No. 59 was fitted with a Telephone No. 164 for a handset and this was an interim modification as the original handset, Telephone No. 28, was a source of complaints about faint speech.  It was eventually decided to replace the whole set instead offering the customer the choice of a Telephone No. 4 or Telephone No. 11.  If the customer would pay the extra rental charge then they could opt for the Telephone No. 162.

A special version with a high output generator was also available for use on magneto Coastguard circuits.  This was the Telephone No. 59A.

There was also a version without the generator  - See Telephone No. 69

See also the Telephone Efficiency Committees Report on Local Battery Area telephones.

Introduced circa 1899 and also found in the GPO Stores Catalogue 1928.

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Last revised: February 29, 2012