Fringe Box



Resident Says: ’Something Must Be Done About These Hideous Masts’

Published on: 24 Jul, 2023
Updated on: 27 Jul, 2023

The new 5G mast by the side of Woking Road. Just beyond the far hedgerow are houses that form part of the Bellfields Estate.

By Martin Giles

A local resident’s hope that a new 15-metre 5G communications mast, by the side of Woking Road, could be relocated, has been dashed.

Telecommunication companies are allowed to erect such masts as “permitted development”, so approval from the local planning authority, in this case Guildford Borough Council, is not required. The mast replaces an earlier version that was less obvious and only 10 metres high.

5G cellular networks are connected to the internet and telephone network by radio waves through local antennae, such as the new mast by Woking Road. The new networks have higher download speeds and can connect more different devices, improving the quality of internet services in crowded areas.

Amy Twigg of Bellfields posted on Next Door: “If you are sick and tired of phone companies and the council building these monstrosities anywhere they like without consultation, please write to our local MP, Angela Richardson. Something must be done about these hideous masts ruining our neighborhoods.”

Cllr James Walsh

Ward councillor James Walsh (Labour Bellfields & Slyfield) said: “While I understand that we all rely on these masts in our everyday lives and they are a necessity in today’s world, I do believe that more sensitivity and communication is required when planning to build them.

“I have spoken to residents who live near this mast in Woking Road and they are rightfully concerned that it was built quite close to their homes without any notice being sent to them by the provider, 3.

The logo of the telecom company “3”

“I know that 3 had put a notice on the site of the mast, but it really isn’t an obvious place for people to get to and, at the very least, letters should have been sent to residents in Almond Close and the part of Woking Road facing it.”

He added: “This is something that needs serious consideration; permitted development regulations need to work for everyone and not just those looking to develop sites or properties. Our residents should always have the right to be kept informed and to offer their views.”

Share This Post

Responses to Resident Says: ’Something Must Be Done About These Hideous Masts’

  1. Keith Francis Reply

    July 25, 2023 at 7:04 am

    As the ward councillor was James Walsh not notified of this application on a weekly list in February 2023?

    Could he please look at Guildford’s Planning Applications under 23/W/00013 to see that 3 applied for the “15.0m high Phase 8 Monopole” on February 9, 2023 and other than one reply from SCC Highways as a Statutory Consultee on February 24 it received the council’s approval on March 31.

    So 3 did nothing wrong.

  2. Victor Howarth Reply

    July 25, 2023 at 8:55 am

    The problem is that sometimes our move into the future does mean that some things that are built, at first, have a surprise effect and take some time to get used to.

    Where I live used to be farmland with no houses, roads or street lights. There weren’t as many trees, no shrubs, just a few hedges, only cows and the odd farmer.

    I need to live in a house with roads to drive on and goods to be delivered in the area. I can’t see phone masts like those in Bellfields but I have seen plenty in my area.

    Slowly we have to accept the 21st century and the benefits to our lives that modern living brings.

  3. K White Reply

    July 27, 2023 at 9:54 am

    Why can’t these masts, at least, be in natural colours, such as green or brown so that there is some attempt at blending them in with their surroundings?

    Even in Morocco they are made to look like palm trees!

  4. John Ferns Reply

    July 27, 2023 at 2:47 pm

    We had one such garish monstrosity imposed on us, 50 metres away on Manor Road, and the same distance to two schools, one a nursery and the other a major secondary.

    We did receive a letter from GBC, to which we, and a number of other affected residents in the vicinity, responded. However, we saw no representation, either for or against from either school, which we thought odd, given the number of children/parents for whom they were they were responsible.

    As for camouflaging the mast, the GBC officer report signed it off, saying: “It is therefore considered that the proposed telecommunications equipment would be in an appropriate location and have an acceptable appearance.”

    The jury is still out on its implications to my heart pacemaker. And the cat has been looking very strangely at me, ever since the mast was turned on two months ago!

  5. Geoff Thompson Reply

    July 27, 2023 at 4:26 pm

    5G masts don’t improve reception for mobile phones, they only improve bandwidth; so they offer no practical advantage over 4G. Worse still, 5G has a much worse range than 4G – the waves travel only 1/40th of the distance, so that is why they want to build 100’s more masts to cover the same area already covered by 4G.

    So none of this will have any practical benefit to residents, and certainly is not the answer for those in no-reception areas.

  6. Stuart Barnes Reply

    July 28, 2023 at 11:06 am

    I remind readers of Hutber’s law. Improvement means deterioration.

Leave a Comment

Please see our comments policy. All comments are moderated and may take time to appear.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *