Concerns over plans for phone mast next to Portsmouth nursery

CONCERNS have been voiced about the potential installation of a mobile phone mast next to a city nursery.

Monday, 12th April 2021, 3:41 pm
Updated Monday, 12th April 2021, 3:43 pm
An image of a phone mast. Picture: Getty Images

Residents have made their objections known about proposals to implement a temporary mast on a patch of empty land next to St Jude's Nursery School in Silver Street, Southsea.

Telecoms company MBNL is considering setting up a 'temporary' mast on the corner of Silver Street and Stone Street to replace one that will soon be removed from Horatia House in Somers Town.

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St Judes Church Nursery in Silver Street which could neighbour the new phone mast. Picture: Google Maps

Nursery manager, Levinia Glanville, said: ‘A phone mast is just a bit off-putting for parents if they were thinking of bringing their children here.

‘I just hope it doesn’t go right next to the nursery and next to where the children play.

‘They say they're safe, it’s just a shame it can't go somewhere else in the city.’

And a 54-year-old resident of nearby Copper Street, who wished to remain anonymous, agreed: ‘One of the main objections is how close it would be to the nursery,' she said.

The plot of land on the corner of Silver Street and Stone Street in Portsmouth that could have a phone mast installed. Picture: Google Maps

'There are also concerns for wildlife in the field and people have been told it could reduce the value of their homes.’

Conservative campaigner for the area, Alicia Denny, added: ‘Although I know we need to keep the city well connected and at the forefront of technological developments, I seriously question whether this is a suitable place for a large mast in such a restricted site and close proximity to people’s homes.’

Residents told The News they were under the impression the mast would offer a 5G service.

However, a spokeswoman for MBNL said: 'In order to continue providing coverage to its customers and critical services to the emergency services we need to deploy a temporary structure whilst a permanent site is approved.

‘The temporary site will provide network coverage to both EE and Three UK customers and will include a 2G, 3G and 4G service. Temporary sites do not have the technical capability to provide 5G services at this time.

‘The local planning authority will be notified formally at the appropriate time. Planning consent will not be required as there are permitted development rights in place to station temporary, movable apparatus for up to 18 months in an emergency situation, which includes the need to replace loss of an operational site from the network.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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