Cllr Michael Lunn, Wealden District Councillor is very aware of public objection to the proposed Telecommunications Mast being proposed at High Hurstwood. As explained during the recent Parish Planning Committee the planning rules have changed for Telecommunication Masts. This is listed in summary below:
Telecommunications Masts – Changes to permitted development (Prior Approval Procedure) under the 2016 (24 November) regulations from the 2015 regulations.
There is currently a new roll out of new telecommunication masts across the country, and to facilitate this there have been some recent changes in Permitted Development rights relating to such installations. This has resulted in concerns being raised by local residents particularly in rural and AONB areas where masts are now being proposed often without a full planning permission being required. The changes that have been implemented are as follows:-
The use of land for an emergency period has been extended from 6 months to 18 months to station and operate movable communications apparatus required to replace unserviceable communications equipment.
A.1 Ground based apparatus (masts/towers)
- Installation – the height of masts which may be installed on unprotected land has been increased from 15 to 25m (20m on a highway) and in AONB the height is now 20m
Alteration or replacement – the height alterations above have also been applied to replacement masts (now inclusive of the AONB).
- Height of Antenna – the previous GPDO did refer to length of additional antennas to not exceeding 3.0m in height. There was no reference to antenna height in 2016.
- Small antennas on buildings – it is now possible to install antenna on buildings in the AONB. Subject to height of building being over 15m and distance from highway 20m (a building over 30m can have 2 antennas).
Buxted Parish Council have recently reviewed the application and recommend refusal to Wealden District Council. Cllr Michael Lunn is supportive of the Parishes position but required technical challenges for the matter to referred to the Planning Committee North for further debate.
Cllr Michael Lunn can be contacted via cllr.Michael.Lunn@Wealden.gov.uk