Thursday, July 13, 2006

Southwick Road Telephone Mast - Planning Meeting

I was told last night that the application for the telephone mast is being fast tracked to be heard by the Planning Board this Monday, July 17th. The Planning Department are also recommending the application be approved by the Planning Board.

Neither of these points are good news I’m afraid. It would appear that it is trying to be pushed through with as little fuss and as quickly as possible.

It will be possible for residents to make a deputation against the application to the meeting should you wish to do so. The Board only allows 5 minutes per deputation, and each application is only allowed one deputation. If there are different groups of people wishing to speak then the time is divided equally between them. It’s therefore very important that we coordinate any deputation from people wishing to object. If you would like me to help organise a meeting to do this then I am very happy to do so.

After the deputations have been made by both the applicant and any objectors the ward councillors get to have their say, and we are not time limited, so it is possible for me to add to the deputations points later on and also answer any points raised by O2 in their deputation.

With the help of Charmaine Despres (who has been the leader of the campaign against the Fisherman’s Walk mast), we have e-mailed possible alternative sites to O2 this week. We are attempting to persuade them that there are better, alternative locations further from the school and local housing.

Turning to the issue of possible alternative sites, I’m very sorry that there has been some confusion surrounding some of the correspondence about alternative sites for the Southwick Road mobile phone mast which I should clarify.

The waste land by the Beaufort Centre at the junction of Clingan Road and Carlyle Road was original offered as an alternative site. I supported this, until it was pointed out to me that it was closer to Stourfield School. I'm sorry that some of the correspondence in opposition to the mast has gone out suggesting this site as a proposed alternative.

There is NO proposal to place a mast at this location though. It was being offered as an alternative site for O2 to consider, that's all.

The alternative sites I’ll be talking to 02 about are at the back of the Beaufort allotments and ideally the Iford Meadows or the piece of waste ground called the Rookery. Both of these are further from the Stourfield School Campus and local housing.

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