Last chance to comment on proposed Worthing 5G mast

Plans to build a 5G mast in Worthing were submitted to the council last month and the consultation period ends today.

Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 11:35 am
How the proposed 5G mast would look like in the streetscene

CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd wants to build a 15 metre mast and equipment cabinets on the corner of Lyndhurst Road and Park Road.

These would sit at the eastern edge of the former gas works site which is currently subject to an application for 209 homes (AWDM/1459/21).

Full planning permission is not required for the mast because the government has given telecoms operators ‘permitted development rights’ for some works.

In this case, because the mast is no taller than 25 metres and is not inside a conservation area or national park, prior approval is being sought from Worthing Borough Council instead.

The council can comment on the design and placement of the mast and can decide whether or not to give prior approval, but it cannot stop it from going ahead or challenge the principle of development.

WBC and members of the public were given 56 days to comment on the application.

The last day to comment is today (October 6) and operators do not necessarily have to take the comments on board.

Several nearby residents have objected to the mast.

One said: “The proposed location is in extremely close proximity to existing housing and will be right outside the newly proposed flats, which is completely unnecessary considering there are many industrial areas in Worthing

that this could sit in causing very little disruption.”

Other objections cited supposed ‘long term health risks of 5G’ and the height and appearance of the mast.

The telecoms company says the location of the mast is a ‘necessity’ for technical and operational reasons.

St William Homes, which hopes to build 209 homes on the nearby former gas works site, has also objected to the mast.

In a letter, the developer’s agent said: “The imposition of a visually dominant telecommunication structure on the public highway is considered entirely inappropriate.

“We disagree strongly with the applicant’s assertion that the proposed works ‘are not to the visual detriment of the surrounding area’.”

The developer says the mast would be ‘significantly taller’ than existing dwellings and visible from the Steyne Gardens Conservation Area.

St William Homes added that the mast would be four metres taller than some parts of its proposed development and could interfere with planned artwork to make the area ‘more inviting’.

The council’s environmental health department has requested that sampling take place before the 5G mast is built as it would be close to contaminated land.

WSCC Highways said the mast would not cause an obstruction on the path or be a visibility issue for traffic.

More information can be found at the Worthing planning portal using reference: AWDM/1708/21.