Mobile phone mast application in Welling

PUBLISHED: 10:18 22 June 2011 | UPDATED: 10:36 22 June 2011

A mobile phone company has applied for planning permission for a phone mast disguised as a 10 metre street column after a bid to have one disguised as a 12.5 metre flagpole on the same spot was refused.

The application by the Telefonica O2 (UK) Ltd And Vodafone (UK) Ltd for Okehampton Crescent, near the junction with Brampton Road, Welling, is also for an equipment and electricity meter cabinet as well as the pole with antennas for Vodafone and O2’s 3G network within a protective shroud at the top so they are not visible.

This comes after Bexley council refused a similar application on October 29 last year, for a twin use by O2 and Vodafone of a 12.5 metre telegraph pole stacked with antennas at the same spot. It was considered the proposed development due to its siting, location and scale, would be intrusive, overbearing and incongruous in a prominent location, resulting in an unacceptable level of street clutter.

The new application reads: “This new prior approval application addresses the contents raised by the planning officer so that the proposal does not appear prominent in the street scene not has an unacceptable effect on the visual amenity of residential occupiers nearby.

“The height of the column is required to ensure a signal can be propagated over the surrounding urban clutter formed by buildings and other structures.

“This is the minimum height at which this shared installation can operate effectively.”

The company has formed a partnership with Vodafone to share mobile assets in the UK and across Europe in a bid to consolidate the number of base stations required and to reduce environmental impact. Consultation with neighbours is due to end on July 1.

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