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‘We don’t need it here’: Opposition rises against 5G mast in Dagenham

PUBLISHED: 07:00 13 October 2020

Opposition to the raising of a 5G mast in Becontree Avenue is mounting. Picture: Claire Barker

Opposition to the raising of a 5G mast in Becontree Avenue is mounting. Picture: Claire Barker

Archant

The planned raising of a 5G mast has been met with opposition from angry neighbours.

Early building work on Three’s tower in Becontree Avenue, Dagenham was due to end on Sunday, October 4.

But people living nearby complain they weren’t consulted about having a mast erected on their doorsteps, given there is another one just 200 yards away.

Claire Barker, who lives in Becontree Avenue, said: “The first we knew was last week when all the road slowed to one lane of traffic. No one was told about this.”

She added a mast would be an eyesore and affect house prices.

“I’m going to lose money if I try to sell. I would not want to live next to a mast. It’s absolutely disgraceful. We don’t need it here,” Claire said.

About 50 people have signed a petition uring council leaders to stop the mast.

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A council spokesperson said: “The mast was not subject to a planning application, however, under current legislation the council can only refuse the installation of the mast if it considers it visually harmful.”

He added that more than 50 residents were notified by Be First, on behalf of the council,about the proposed installation on April 30. However, Claire denied this.

“We have not been given a chance to disagree. I’m set on stopping this,” Claire said.

And the 46-year-old said she has form opposing masts, having appealed against a tower planned for Bennett’s Castle Lane a few years ago.

A Three spokesperson said: “Access to 5G has a vital role to play in boosting the economy of Barking and Dagenham by helping residents and businesses get faster and more reliable network coverage.

“While we try to keep mast sites as unobtrusive as possible, they do need to be situated near to where people will be using the service and, in many cases, in precise locations to ensure the widest breadth of coverage.

“We have therefore chosen a location with this in mind while also following the standard location guidelines.”

Three men were arrested on suspicion of arson after an existing 20-metre tall mast in Becontree Avenue was destroyed by fire in April.

They were released without further action and the case closed because of a lack of evidence.


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