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Telephone - 300 Series

300 Series

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1950s (manufactured)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Ericsson (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Moulded bakelite

  • Credit Line:

    Given by British Telecom Ltd.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The 300 series was the standard British telephone issued by the GPO between 1938 and1959. It has a built-in bell, and a drawer in the base containing an information plate for phone numbers. The design was first produced by Ericsson of Beeston, Nottinghamshire, England, in 1932, but was not adopted by the GPO until 1938. After that, it was produced by a number of manufacturers to a common design.

Physical description

White Bakelite plastic telephone with cord-wrapped cable connecting receiver to telephone. Clear plastic finger dial with clock-wise mechanism. Two silver buttons on cradle.

Place of Origin

England (made)


1950s (manufactured)


Ericsson (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Moulded bakelite


Height: 14.5 cm, Width: 15.5 cm, Depth: 19 cm

Object history note

In 2001, BT began the dispersal of its collection of historic telecommunications artefacts and documentation, through the Connected Earth Project. This project was established to dispose of BT's collections to the professional museums sector, and to make available the history of British telecommunications via a 'virtual museum' (www.connected-earth.com). The majority of specialist collections was dispersed to 9 partner museums (including the Science Museum and the Museum of London). The rest of the material was offered to the museums sector (including the V&A) on a first come, first served basis. This telephone is one of those given to the V&A [2003/167].

Descriptive line

Telephone, made by Ericsson, England, 1950s.

Production Note

Reason For Production: Retail


Bakelite (TM)




Household objects; Plastic; Product design; Telecommunication

Production Type

Mass produced


Furniture and Woodwork Collection

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