The Collectors' Network

UK Dialing Scheme

Exchange codes in the UK follow the old STD pattern used up to 1995 prior to the introduction of Linked Number Schemes.

Unlike the US, where exchange codes are all three digits, in the UK, the codes can be three, four or five digits long (excluding the access digit). To accommodate as many C*NET users as possible, codes should be reserved for the exchanges that you intend to use - not just an area code.

If you wish to use a three digit code for, say, a Group Switching Centre, it will necessary to allocate the code to the fourth digit, (i.e. first digit of subs levels). Otherwise, all the dependent exchange levels will be unavailable to anyone else.For Director area codes, please reserve to the 4th/5th digit, (i.e. STD code plus first three digits of the seven digit number). This will define an individual exchange.

Reservation of Codes
Exchange Codes may be 'reserved,' but not complete 'area' codes. In the UK, the situation of codes is somewhat different to the US/Canada. In the UK, some users have former public exchanges, and wish to use the code associated with that exchange. Other users wish to use the code for the exchange area that they live in. To endeavour to make it fairer for all, an exchange code may reserved, for up to 2 months. After that, if someone else wishes to have an exchange code which has been reserved but not used, and they are ready to activate the code and connect, they will be allocated the code. If two users wish to have the same exchange code and no mutual agreement can be come to, then the order of precedence should be that the code goes to-

  1. the person who lives in the exchange area served by the code they wish to have.
  2. the person who has a former public exchange that served the code area.
  3. anyone else
Please don't hesitate to ask for advice on the old code that you require.


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