After twice beating off T-Mobiles attempts to erect another mobile mast in Bolton, residents are decidedly upset that an out-of-town planning inspector has given the go ahead after a second appeal.
Bolton Council had refused T-Mobiles application to site a mobile mast on Moss Bank Way opposite a McDonalds earlier in the year on the grounds that it would be ‘visually intrusive’
On appeal this decision had been confirmed by a local planning inspector; however a after a second appeal adjudicated by an ‘out-of-towner’, planning inspector Robert Barker, the mast has been given the go-ahead.
Barker said: "It would present a relatively slim, vertical element in the street scene which I consider would blend satisfactorily with other street furniture,"
It has been reported that local Bolton residents feared the mast would be a distraction to drivers, although Barker insisted it was no more distracting that a street lamp – he may not have witnessed one local resident with tin-foil wrapped around his head alluding to radiation fears rather than the masts resemblance of a street lamp.
Although Mr Barker did add that there was nothing to indicate there would be a risk to health and that T-Mobile had a certificate showing the mast would meet radiation guidelines.
Resident Joyce Bilbrough, told a local paper: "We are quite disgusted. This had been turned down so many times.”
"It is so unsightly and will be just in front of where I live.” a chap dozing in the doorway of McDonalds said.
"I worry about the health impact and the damage this will do children going to McDonald’s for their burgers," he continued, whilst trying not to spill his SpecialBrew.
Alan Bainbridge, another objector, said the mast would be "akin to Blackpool Tower" although it was unclear whether he thought this was good or not.
Smithills Councillor Richard Silvester told The Bolton News: "I am very disappointed with the planning inspector’s decision because a majority of the Bolton’s planning committee voted to refuse it.