‘IMPROVED’ coverage and capacity through a 5G telecommunications installation could come to Mossley if plans are approved by Tameside Council.
However, Mossley Town Team is strongly objecting to the proposals for the 18 metre high monopole and cabinets on Stamford Street which they say will bring about the “destruction and detraction from Mossley’s built heritage”.
The plans have been submitted for applicant CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd to install the monopole, wraparound cabinet at base and three ancillary equipment cabinets and associated ancillary works.
Documents submitted with the application state: “CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd is committed to providing improved network coverage and capacity, most notably in relation to 5G services.
“In these unprecedented times of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is recognised that high-speed mobile connectivity is the lifeblood of a community; facilitating educational benefits, providing access to vital services, improving communications with the associated commercial benefits for local businesses, enabling e-commerce and facilitating the increased need and demand for working from home, as well as enjoying access to social, media and gaming for leisure time activities.
“The very nature of installing new 5G mast infrastructure within such an urban setting requires a highly considered balance between the need to extend practical coverage reach with that of increasing risk of visual amenity intrusion.
“In this location, existing mast sites are not capable of supporting additional equipment compliment to extend coverage reach across the target area and prospective ‘in-fill’ mast sites are extremely limited.
“There is an acute need for a new base station to provide effective service coverage and in this case, the height of the proposed street pole is the minimum required to bring the benefits of 5G to this area.
“Proposed location of a new mast shown above will assimilate well into the immediate street scene and not be detrimental.
“Taking into account the site-specific factors and technical constraints, available options and planning constraints, it is considered that the proposed street pole clearly represents the optimum environmental solution to extend coverage to the target community.
“In accordance with a recognised need to expand and promote telecommunications networks across the region, it is considered that the proposal fully accords with the National Planning Policy Framework.”
The documents adds that other sites were considered at Argyle Street, Market Street, Waterton Lane, Arundel Street/Dean Street junction, and Stockport Road but were discounted.
The documents add: “CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd supports Government ambition to be a global leader in the next generation of mobile technology set out within its March 2017 white paper, ‘Next Generation Mobile Technologies: A 5G strategy for the UK’ and expand its mobile network across the local planning authority area and specifically in this instance, to enhance 5G coverage levels in and around the site subject to this application.”
However, a letter written by chair Paul Dowthwaite on behalf of Mossley Town Team to the case officer James Appleton, as well as submitted to the council’s website, objects “in the strongest terms” to the application.
It says: “The basis of the objection is ‘Conflict With Land Use Policy and other Council and Government Policies’.
“It is council policy and government policy to support the regeneration of town centres and the Town Team was originally set up with council/government funding to help with this support.
“A recent grant from the Government’s Welcome Back Fund has enabled us to install an open air art gallery on the Market ground which this monopole and associated cabinets will almost completely obscure.
“The Town Team has a more fundamental objection about the destruction and detraction from Mossley’s built heritage which this development will bring about.
“As we work with local councillors to enhance the attractiveness of our town centres and to encourage visitors, this monopole will provide a threatening and off-putting dominant presence in the middle of our busiest town centre which will deter locals and visitors alike.”
See the plans and submit a comment for the application 21/01254/NCD online www.tameside.gov.uk/planningandbuildingcontrol