BT do appear to be the new emergency service. Only a month or so ago did I experience a close pass by one of their vans, clearly on the way to an emergency. Since only an idiot would speed past a cyclist with inches to spare if it wasn't really important.
This time, on Saturday, I got confirmation of the importance of the BT van.
This time, they were clearly attending to such an important matter that they had to park blocking much of the pavement next to a busy junction by the market. Clearly whatever they were doing was so important that they couldn't go around the corner and park in the large multi-storey only yards away, or the numerous other car parks around the area.
I saw no evidence of work going on near the van, but clearly that is my lack of understanding. And my thoughts that the driver of the van may have just put it there whilst doing his or her shopping was just my cynical mind.
On looking into the cab, I noticed that there were already several penalty notices on the dashboard. Presumably some traffic wardens don't realise the urgent work these vans are engaged upon.