By Bob Garratt
I knew that Holzwickede wanted a red telephone box so when the Post Office put them up for auction I went to the first and only auction I have ever attended and bid for one. Don Johnson was also bidding for one to send to his family in Perth, Australia. We were both successful, and if I remember rightly paid £320 each for them. Don and I hired a lorry and them taken to my garden in Rodden, where I then lived. They sat there until I had mine lifted onto a trailer, which I hired for the purpose. Don had already had his moved.
I planned the route and decided to go by Ramsgate and Hook of Holland. That meant that once I had climbed the hill from Rodden to Langton Herring there was no worse hill before Ramsgate. Through Holland and Germany, as I knew, was quite flat. I had a Vauxhall 1600 at the time and the combined weight of trailer and contents was only just legal.
So on Saturday evening, November 18th 1989, Margit and I set off. The journey was uneventful. We had a good laugh while waiting to board the ferry at Ramsgate. A driver of a car, also waiting to board, came across to me and said "Did you know you can get smaller car phones nowadays".
We arrived safely in Holwickede to be greeted by Marie-Luise Wehlack and by Margit's sister Monika. The date was significant because Germany had just been re-unified, so for the first time since 1981, Monika, from what had been East Germany, was able to travel to the West. Leaving the trailer and phone box safely in the hands of the local Council, I went to the Wehlack's house and slept all day.
How it was in April 2017