The application submitted by CTIL and Clarke Telecomms on behalf of its client, Vodafone, to site a 21m (70 feet) base mast at the back of the BT Exchange building on Lower Alt Road was considered at Sefton’s Planning Committee on Wednesday 8th February, and unanimously REJECTED.
At present the Parish Council is not aware of any plans by CTIL or Clarke to appeal the decision or submit further planning applications, however we will let residents know as soon as we hear any news.
Although no application has been submitted for an alternative site in the village, we are aware that CTIL and Clarke Telecomms have also undertaken a feasibility study of a possible site on the grounds of the Hightown Club. This has been done with the knowledge of both the Club and the Parish, however the Parish is continuing to work with residents to find more suitable viable sites, if possible, well away from residential areas in the village (e.g. Altcar Training Camp, and the existing EE mast site at Orrell Hill Lane), and the Club has already issued a statement assuring residents that it would consult with all Hightown residents for their views if feasibility was proven, and that if a majority of residents objected then it would not take the matter any further. The Club also stress that they would only consider a site based on a mast design that sits on top of a floodlight pole or that is disguised a telegraph pole. Read the Club’s full statement on their Facebook page.
CTIL and Clarke have stressed their survey work is not yet complete however, on request, they have shared their initial drawings and site location (Hightown Club mast site and design) on the Club grounds allowing us to see what a proposed mast would look like, should they opt to pursue this as another option.
BT Exchange site
The Parish Council were notified on 14th November 2016 by CTIL and Clarke Communications, acting for Vodafone, of their intention to submit a planning application for a 21M (70 feet) tall base station mast on the BT Exchange plot adjacent to the village green. Click on the links to view the proposed mast design and location: BT Exchange site_mast design and elevation ; BT Exchange site_mast location and site plan
We were notified that a number of alternative sites around the village had already been considered as part of an options appraisal, and including Altcar Training Camp, the former RUFC St. Marys playing field in Gorsey Lane, and the Hightown Club, but had been rejected in favour of the BT Exchange site on account of unacceptable visual impact and because these sites were too far away from residents to provide a sufficient increase in mobile phone coverage.
Residents had until 5th January 2017 to submit any comments or objections on the mast application. The full application documents can be viewed on Sefton Council’s planning portal at: http://pa.sefton.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=OI4I0RNW01H00
There was a high level of opposition, with 143 separate written objections lodged and large petition with 402 signatures also submitted. The planning application was originally considered at the Planning Committee meeting of 18th January 2017, but deferred, by mutual agreement between the Council and the applicant, until a later committee meeting while alternative sites (centering on the Hightown Club) were investigated for suitability.