AN old red telephone box that became synonymous with Wirral chart-toppers OMD is now back on the street thanks to a campaign led by fans.

The kiosk on Greenwood Road, Meols, is beloved by OMD fans as it is the focus of the band’s second single release Red Frame/White Light in 1980.

Wirral Globe: OMD: Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey

Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey of OMD - they really are happier now their phone box is back!

The boys used to make calls to organise their early gigs in the late 1970s and the number - 632 3003 - is a key features of the song's lyrics.

Founder OMD member Andy Mcluskey told the Globe: "The old telephone box at the corner of Greenwood road was our communication centre to the rest of the world in the very early days of the band when neither Paul Humphreys nor I lived in houses that had a telephone.

"It had a nostalgic connection for both of us as we needed it to call school friends and girlfriends and seemed an appropriate subject for a song by a band that specialises in the interaction of humans and machines.

"Using 632 3003 we arranged concerts, phoned music newspapers, and kept in contact with our manager and record label.

"It was here that I heard the news that we had our first top 20 single."

Andy added: "I was sad to see it removed, but frankly I'm amazed at the level of support that the Friends gathered in having it reinstated.

"Many thanks to all who have taken part of preserving this small piece of our history.

"I am sorry that I can't attend the official unveiling on Friday - but delighted to be able to say that it is because I am still playing music and touring 40 years after our 'little red office' started us on the journey."

The telephone box was removed earlier this year as part of BT’s payphone removal programme, with no objections having been received as part of the public consultation process towards the end of 2016.

But once fans realised it had been removed they quickly organised themselves into a campaign group to call for its reinstatement, if not as a public telephone as a kind of tourist attraction for OMD fans from near and far, who regularly visited the site as part of their travels.

Their lobbying quickly drew support within Wirral Council and particularly from cabinet member for transport Cllr Stuart Whittingham.

Officers from the twon hall’s highways team and Wirral West Constituency Committee liaised with colleagues from BT and the box was secured and placed into quarantine while arrangements for its recovery were put in place.

The campaigners originally named themselves "Save 632 3003" but have now become the "Friends of 632 3003" and as a properly-constituted Friends group have committed to maintenance and management of the telephone box.

One of their first tasks will be to give the kiosk a lick of paint in the famous "currant red" colour with a painting kit provided free of charge by BT.

Councillor Whittingham said: “We’re just really happy to have been able to play a part in rescuing this significant local landmark before it was lost forever.

“It has been an unusual thing to have been part of – both BT and the council followed the correct process in managing the proposed phone box removals and indeed some of the 26 planned removals were refused after public objections.

"But in the case of 632 3003 its cultural status is unofficial and the objections didn’t come until later.

“The important thing was we acted quickly and decisively and having made suitable arrangements with the new Friends group we have been able to work together to find a way of satisfying all parties.”