More than 100 people objected to the Devonshire Avenue proposals submitted by telecoms firm Three, criticising the plan to erect the equipment on the green.
The decision to refuse planning permission, due to its ‘visually dominant and intrusive’ design, has been welcomed by councillors who said alternative locations needed to be used.
‘This is a great result for Central Southsea,’ councillor George Fielding said. ‘Our issue wasn’t about the technology but the complete disregard for location.
‘We are pleased Portsmouth City Council recognised this, as well as the strength of feeling by residents against the plans.’
The planning report rejecting the scheme said the proposals submitted in November were contrary to council planning policies and that the negative effects of the scheme could not have been overcome by any revisions.
‘The proposal, by reason of its siting, design, appearance and loss of green infrastructure, is considered to be visually dominant and intrusive and detrimental to the more open character and appearance of the area,’ it said.
The application drew widespread opposition from people living in the area who said they ‘failed to see’ why the green had been chosen by Three.
‘This increasingly rare and valued green space within our community will be severely impacted should this planning application go ahead,’ Darren Reeves, who lives opposite the chosen location, said after its submission.
‘I fail to see why our neighbourhood should be subjected to a loss of this treasured amenity when there is significant commercial and industrial space just metres to the north either at the Pompey Centre or Fratton Goods Yard where a larger mast with greater range could surely be erected.’
CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd, the umbrella company which operates the Three mobile network, said there was an ‘acute’ need for the mast in the area and that it was the most suitable site.
But campaigner Sarah Shreeve, who helped co-ordinate a petition against the application, said said the refusal was ‘good news’.
‘Now we’ve had this decision it’s good to hear the tree and daffodil bulbs will be safe and the green space will remain available for community use,’ she said.
Suzy Horton, Central Southsea ward councillor and the deputy leader of the council, said the campaign against the scheme was an example of ‘the best type of community action’.
‘We are all so pleased to have helped protect this small island of green in our densely populated area,’ she said. ‘There are many other places this mast could be better sited.’
Her comments were echoed by fellow ward councillor Charlotte Gerada who said the site was an ‘important green space’ that needed to be protected. She said the decision showed that ‘people power works’.