Company wins appeal for mast

A MOBILE phone company has won the right to put up a phone mast in Bakewell despite officials turning down their application.

The Peak Park Planning Authority refused the application from the Hutchinson 3G Group UK Ltd in May this year. But the phone company appealed against the decision to put up a mast on Butts Road, and won last week.

A resident who did not want to be named, said: "It's a bit of a waste of time having a Peak Park Authority who are supposed to take care of these things when their decision is overturned.

"It will be 20m away from my property. I know they said there is no health issue, but you can't convince people who will live near it.

"It isn't a good thing to have in the centre of Bakewell."

Bakewell Town Councillor Joyce Steel said: "In my personal opinion, I don't think it's a suitable position. It's too close to properties and right in the centre of the town. It's going to be an eyesore."

The application was refused by the Peak Park planning committee on the grounds that it would harm the conservation area and harm residential properties. Twenty one letters of objection were also received.

The company appealed against the decision, and the appeal was allowed by the planning inspector.

The inspector decided the mast would only be seen from a short section of Butts Road, and could not be seen from ground level in the town centre.

The Peak Park required a condition be put on the planning permission that the mast must be painted to blend in with the surroundings, and removed when no longer required.

Narendra Bajaria, chair of the planning committee, said: "Each application is considered on its merits, and in this case the committee felt that the phone-mast would have a detrimental effect on the character of the Conservation Area, the setting of the listed buildings and the amenities of nearby residents.

"The inspector allowed the appeal after careful consideration of those arguments and we have to accept his decision."

A spokesperson from Hutchinson 3G Group UK Ltd, said: "We are pleased with the inspectors decision to allow us this site as we do need a site in the town in order for people to use their phones."

By Amy Thurston

09 November 2005



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