Amazing Places

The World's Smallest Museum Is In A British Phone Booth

You enter a classic red phone booth in West Yorkshire, England, but you can't make a call. Why not? This particular telephone box is now the world's smallest museum. Warley Museum opened in October 2016 with the hopes of making it into the Guinness Book of World Records.

Tiny Museum, Big Goals

Who wakes up and decides to turn a phone booth into a tiny museum? According to Condé Nast Traveler, the booth was chosen over a defibrillator station and a library when "British Telecommunications (BT) announced plans to discontinue service to 43 pay phones in the area around Warley." Although cell phone use has left them mostly obsolete, the red booths remain Great Britain's most iconic and beloved design. The Warley Community Association (WCA) received a "phenomenal" response when they revealed the only BT telephone box to be remade into a museum in all of the UK.

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Warley is hoping for another distinction, however: the world's smallest museum. It's so small, in fact, that only one visitor can fit at a time. Once the phone booth was revamped and the first exhibit was launched, the WCA immediately submitted an application to the Guinness Book of World Records. Warley Museum is up against a handful of museums that also claim to be the smallest. There's even a tiny museum in Superior, Arizona bearing the name World's Smallest Museum. Another notable contender is Mmeuseumm—a 36 square feet museum housed in an old New York City elevator shaft.

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Warley In A Capsule

While you patiently await the world record results, Warley Museum is currently offering exhibits, changing every few months. The opening exhibit was of local historical artifacts and "curiosities" that were donated by Warley residents, including "old photographs, antique jewelry, and glass etchings." The museum is situated in front of the Maypole Inn at the center of Warley village, and it's free to the public (donations accepted). But if you need to make a call, just use your cell phone.

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Written by Curiosity Staff March 16, 2017

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