Anti-mast fight goes up a gear

Coun Karen Henshaw with the petition against the phone mast in Leach Lane, St Annes.
Coun Karen Henshaw with the petition against the phone mast in Leach Lane, St Annes.
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AN official complaint is being lodged over the handling of planning permission for a phone mast which has sparked outrage among St Annes residents.

The 15m mast at the corner of Headroomgate Road and Highbury Road was erected in June on behalf of phone providers Vodafone and O2 and has prompted scores of objections from locals.

Fylde mayoress Coun Karen Henshaw, who lives opposite the mast, has led the gathering of signatures for a petition, which was being sent off this week to the company responsible for the base station mast, Cornerstone Media.

But Coun Henshaw is also angry at the way the planning application for the structure was handled by Fylde Council and has sent an official letter of complaint to Paul Walker, the council’s Director of Strategic Development, who is ultimately responsible for planning issues.

Copies of the letter have also been sent to Fylde chief executive Phil Woodward and the Local Government Ombudsman and Coun Henshaw said: “I am not happy at all which how this was handled and feel that the applicants got permission by default.

“Letters asking for any objections from residents were only sent to a very small number of homes and the period in which they could reply coincided with the Christmas holidays. It has all been very unsatisfactory and I feel needs looking into fully.”