Opposition to plans for a 5G mast 200m from an Ipswich primary school
- Credit: Archant
Plans to build a 5G mast 200m from an Ipswich primary school have met with resistance from residents of the area.
Planning documents for a cabinet and 20m-high mast on a stretch of pavement at the corner of Belle Vue Road and Woodbridge Road, close to St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, have been submitted.
The application was submitted by Hutchison 3G – the legal name for the network Three. It is an approved development, but still needs to be signed off by the Highways Authority.
Drawings supplied to support the application show the mast to be twice the height of nearby houses and located between an existing BT cabinet and a street light.
Residents have raised issues with the proposal including its visual impact on the area, the space it will take up on the pavement and how residents have been notified about the application.
In 2007 an application to build a smaller mast in the same location was turned down because of its visual impact on the area.
Ashley Pickering, a resident of Belle Vue Road, said: “It’s on a busy road and there’s two schools either side of it and an elderly peoples sheltered accommodation right next door so I think if you’re narrowing the pavement anymore it’s a bit dangerous. If you’ve got people working on the cabinets and the doors are open, there’s not really much space on the pavement to get passed and avoid the road.
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“I’m sure there are other, better, places to put it not near a busy highway or a residential area.”
Mr Pickering also raised the issue of how residents were notified: “The planning notice was just wrapped around a single lamppost. It was almost unreadable,” he said.
Another Belle Vue Road resident wrote: ‘Such a high structure in such a built-up area is totally inappropriate. It will rise way above the roofline of the nearby Post Mill Close flats.’
A spokesman for Three said: “The 5G rollout by all UK MNOs complies with all global standards on health and safety which have been developed since the early 1990s.
“5G and improved 4G rollout is vital for the residents and businesses of Ipswich. We want to offer the community a reliable network experience and a new site will be critical to making this happen. As part of the application process, the Highways Authority will assess the mast and ensure it does not impact pedestrians. We are happy to discuss the site with the council, and will work with them to find a way forwards.”