'Ridiculous' - Village objects to 100ft 4G mast plan

Duncan Baker MP and Thwaite Common

A bid to erect a 98ft mast in Erpingham has been labelled "ridiculous" by Duncan Baker MP. - Credit: Duncan Baker/Google

A bid to erect a 30-metre tall 4G phone mast in a north Norfolk village has received strong opposition from the community which has said the proposed structure would "deface the skyline".

Villagers living in Erpingham, who are planning to hold a protest against the mast on Friday (November 5), have complained that it would be an "industrial looking eyesore of unparalleled height in a totally inappropriate location".

The application, which has been submitted to North Norfolk District Council (NNDC), would see the 30m (98ft) mast built on a site north of The Street and next to Thwaite Common, an area of meadow, copse and marsh.

Thwaite Common in Norfolk

Thwaite Common is an area of meadow, copse and marsh which runs along the boundary between the parishes of Erpingham and Alby with Thwaite. - Credit: Google

The structure would support three antennas and two transmission dishes, as well as equipment cabinets and ancillary development.

In documents supporting the application, Cornerstone, a mobile infrastructure services company, has said the mast would enable the roll-out of smart meters in the area, as well as improving mobile phone coverage.

But more than 70 objections, from residents as well as both Erpingham and Alby with Thwaite parish councils, have been sent to NNDC, raising concerns about a lack of consultation over the proposal and the potential visual impact of the site.

The application states that the mast would be surrounded and screened by 27m tall trees but some objections claim they are subject to a felling licence.

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One neighbour said the proposal is "not in keeping with its surroundings" and that the village would "lose a very special, very calming and very rare environment".

North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker. Picture: Supplied by Duncan Baker

North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker. Picture: Supplied by Duncan Baker - Credit: Archant

Duncan Baker, MP for North Norfolk, said: "What we're seeing is proposals for enormous masts to be put in completely inadequate locations in our countryside, so if you have this mast in question, it is so large that it will have to have an aviation marker on the very top of it, which is ridiculous in a conservation area.

"We can't be putting 30 metre objects in the middle of beautiful areas," he said.

The protest against the proposed mast is due to take place at 12.15pm at Thwaite Common.

In August, NNDC refused plans to erect a 60ft mast in Overstrand.


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