Yellow Pages – Final Edition

I heard a strange and faint ‘flop’ sound as something was posted through my letterbox yesterday afternoon. It was strange because I had already receiving my daily dose of Royal Mail and it puzzled my brain to try and recall why I had ordered that was so small and dainty that wouldn’t have been delivered by one of my trusty Post people, and still outstanding to be delivered by an alternative courier.

It turned out to be a Yellow Pages.

While I’m aware they’ve become slimmer and slimmer over the years this one was even more on the flimsy side. I wondered why they still bothered. It wasn’t until after I’d had a quick flick through it to look for my own business. Gone are the days of been passed from one section to another; this still happened somewhat, but the pages it was was referring me to was the one I was – there seemed to be more “see p. …” “see p. …” than actual adverts. A glance through the rear index proved to be equally less fruitful (is that a mathematical possibility, equally less?)

I closed it, still receiving the same dose of ink fumes as if the volume was still a hefty inch-plus-thick tome, and considered simply tossing it in the recycling or replacing it with the previous one I must still have knocking about under my desk. It wasn’t until that moment that I noticed the blue corner on the front cover that read “Final Edition”. “Final one of the year?” I considered, “or do they really mean?… no they can’t do…”

A quick search online revealed that yes, the Yellow Pages, in paper form is being axed; this is indeed the last edition.

The article says: “Yell is printing 23m copies of one last edition next year which it hopes will become a souvenir.”

What do you call that expression of “m’eh” when you just breathe through your nose? Whatever it is called, I did that. I wished I had kept one of the decent-sized directories to compare this last one too, and use that instead as a souvenir to reminisce over.

It’s a shame to learn that a British staple such as the Yellow Pages has gone by the wayside in favour of the online alternative, but what can you do? By the look of the state of this addition they should have perhaps given up sooner and saved 23 million copies being recycled (because I’ll assume they will all eventually be recycled eventually).


  1. Good to know that when the CME finally comes to destroy technological civilization, both the internet and the phone system will be eradicated. But, good to note that a tissue-papered phonebook will serve you well as a fire-starter come the day.

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