ISSUE: Phone Masts

The Long Running Saga of the O2 mast draws to an end

A mobile phone mast which was the subject of a long running legal battle is to come down after a high court judge ruled earlier this year that the council was right to order its removal.

The mast had originally been built without planning permission because the council had been told it would be lower than 15 metres but investigations subsequently confirmed that the height for planning purposes was over the 15 metre limit.

Local people had objected to the mast which was erected opposite their houses in Roehampton Lane. The council told the company - telecommunications giants O2 - in January 2001 that the installation had to be either reduced in height or removed.

Now the company will take down the mast which stands on the eastern boundary of the Rosslyn Park site. Instead they will erect replacement antennae on a new structure alongside the rugby pitch - 120 metres away from the junction with Roehampton Lane and Upper Richmond Road.

The new mast will be erected on the same site as the current floodlighting pole and will be of a similar design to the existing structure. It will include both antennae and floodlighting. Permission for the replacement installation was granted last night by the council's planning applications committee (September 18).

Planning applications chairman Ravi Govindia said:

"The outcome is the best possible for the residents in Roehampton Lane. The new pole is sited well away from their homes and doubles up as floodlighting for the rugby ground.

"The council fought a long battle to get the original mast removed. The eventual decision was an important one in planning law where there is little protection for the resident concerned about the impact of mobile phone masts."

19th September 2003


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