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Agenda item

16/069353/FUL London Road Streetworks London Road Corsham


Tim Walton and Owen Hurst spoke in objection to the application.


Cllr Sheila Parker, Box Parish Council, spoke in objection to the application.


The Planning Area Team Leader introduced the application which was for a proposed 4G equipment installation for Box Tunnel. It was recommended that planning permission be granted subject to the conditions outlined in the report an additional condition recommended in the Late Observations. It was explained that the application had been deferred from a previous meeting to allow investigation of four issues: the line of sight through Box Tunnel and the location of the telecommunications mast, alternative locations considered, the ability to use cabling to achieve the same coverage as a mast, and the need for enhanced emergency services coverage in the tunnel above Network Rail communications technology.


The Team Leader explained that the applicant was satisfied the proposed location would allow extended coverage, and a map to illustrate this was shown. It was highlighted that Appendix 2 to the report demonstrated alternative mast locations that had been considered and it was emphasised that nearby land was owned by Network Rail which was not obliged to give up its land for the siting of a mast. Members understood that the applicant had advised that cabling would not be suitable in the Box Tunnel as an alternative to a mast; there would also be negative impacts upon the heritage asset of such cabling. It was also confirmed that that Network Rail’s communication technology was not available to the emergency services which would benefit from improved coverage as a result of the proposal. Officers recommended the application be approved due to the benefits of extended coverage in this ‘not spot’ outweighing the negative implications of the proposal.


The Committee was invited to ask technical questions, in response to which it was confirmed that information about the viability of cabling had been submitted by the applicant in writing. It was also explained that Network Rail were not obligated to assist in providing alternative options for emergency service coverage. The officer confirmed that other locations for the mast had been explored, as detailed in the report, and the proposed location would allow for improved coverage in the tunnel.


Members of the public then spoke as detailed above.


The local member, Cllr Brian Mathew, stated that following legal advice he was not attending this meeting as a Committee member to avoid any perception of bias or predetermination since he has previously campaigned against this application. Cllr Mathew spoke only as the local member and cited the many objections raised by local residents to the application. The councillor spoke in favour of using cabling in the tunnel or other locations for the mast to ensure suitable 4G coverage.


In the debate that followed, Cllr Hutton, seconded by Cllr Sturgis, moved the officer recommendation that planning permission be granted subject to conditions as amended by late items. Members of the Committee expressed disappointment with the response from the applicant that cabling was not a suitable option to negate the need for a mast and made reference to this technology being available to provide 4G in the Chanel Tunnel. Councillors were sympathetic of the views of local residents, however it was highlighted that civil matter raised in the public forum were not planning considerations. It was discussed that a benefit of the application would be improved network coverage for the emergency services.




To GRANT planning permission, subject to the following conditions:


1.    The development hereby permitted shall be begun before the expiration of three years from the date of this permission.


REASON: To comply with the provisions of Section 91 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 as amended by the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.


2.    Notwithstanding the details submitted, prior to the commencement of the development/works, details of the colour and finish of the mast and associated equipment shall be submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority. The development shall be undertaken in accordance with the approved details and maintained thereafter.


REASON: In the interests of the character and appearance of the area and the adjacent Listed Building.


3.    The mast and all equipment shall be removed from the site within 3 months of it ceasing to be required for telecommunications purposes.


REASON: In the interests of visual amenity and the adjacent Listed Building


4.    The development hereby permitted shall be carried out in accordance with the following approved plans: 75436/1451357-04; 01; 02; 03;05; 06; 07; 08; 09 received 8th December 216.


REASON: For the avoidance of doubt and in the interests of proper planning.


5.    Notwithstanding the provisions of the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 (or any Order revoking or re- enacting or amending those Orders with or without modification), no development within Schedule 2, Part 16, Class A shall take place on the Telecommunications Mast and associated Apparatus hereby permitted.



REASON:  In the interests of the amenity of the area, the setting of designated nearby heritage assets and to enable the Local Planning Authority to consider individually whether planning permission should be granted for additions, extensions or enlargements.




Please note that Council offices do not have the facility to receive material samples. Please deliver material samples to site and inform the Planning Officer where they are to be found.



Any alterations to the approved plans, brought about by compliance with Building Regulations or any other reason must first be agreed in writing with the Local Planning Authority before commencement of work.



The applicant is requested to note that this permission does not affect any private property rights and therefore does not authorise the carrying out of any work on land outside their control. If such works are required it will be necessary for the applicant to obtain the landowners consent before such works commence. If you intend carrying out works in the vicinity of the site boundary, you are also advised that it may be expedient to seek your own advice with regard to the

requirements of the Party Wall Act 1996.

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