Approval has been given for an 18-metre-tall phone mast to be erected on land in Stevenage, despite residents' concerns and a previous application for the same site being refused by the borough council.

Stevenage Borough Council has approved an application by Cignal Infrastructure UK Limited (Three) to erect a phone mast on land next to Fishers Green and Corton Close.

A number of objections to the plans were lodged with the council, including concerns that the phone mast will be an eyesore and will affect house prices.


The council refused an application for an 18m phone mast for this site in July 2021, albeit 20 metres further south-east, over concerns it would be "an incongruous feature in the street scene and would have an unacceptable impact on views".

It also said the applicant had "failed to provide any evidence that the development would not harm any potential archaeological remains on the site".

However, a subsequent appeal by the applicant, CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd, was upheld by the Planning Inspectorate, who concluded that "the proposed development would cause no significant adverse effects on the area’s character or appearance, nor on its archaeology".

Regarding Cignal Infrastructure UK Limited (Three)'s application for the site, Stevenage Borough Council's planning officer advised the local authority's Planning and Development Committee that "to refuse on the basis of detrimental harm to the the visual amenities of the area would be unreasonable, given the inspector has already determined this is not the case".

Last week, the committee gave approval for the development. 


Cignal Infrastructure UK Limited (Three) said "there is now a requirement to upgrade the network to provide improved coverage and capacity, most notably in relation to 5G services".

The proposed mast will be mounted on a wide grass verge next to Fishers Green, "therefore avoiding impeding on pedestrian flow and allowing pedestrians to maintain unrestricted access to the footpath", the applicant said.

The company added: "As with all 5G cells this is an extremely constrained cell search area. Options are extremely limited and the only viable solution that minimises amenity issues has been put forward."