Telecoms Mast, Whitehouse Loan

Posted on: October 13, 2022

The Cockburn Association supports stakeholders’ objections to the installation of a telephone mast in the Marchmont, Meadows and Bruntsfield Conservation Area

Address: 108 Whitehouse Loan Edinburgh

Proposal:  Telecoms Mast 22 Metres West Of 108 Whitehouse Loan Edinburgh

Ref No: 22/04200/FUL

Closing date for comments:  Fri 30 Sep 2022

Determination date:  Fri 21 Oct 2022

Result:  Pending

Cockburn Response

The Cockburn OBJECTS to this application.

This application has been brought to the Cockburn’s attention by concerned local stakeholders. The proposed telecommunications equipment would result in excessive visual and physical clutter within the streetscape.

The proposal would have a harmful impact upon the visual quality of the wider street scene and so detract from the amenity and special character of the conservation area and from residential amenity. It is our view that the application is not consistent with Policy Env 6 Conservation Areas – Development as it does not preserve or enhance the special character or appearance of the conservation area.

In addition, this proposal will add street clutter to a relatively narrow pavement which is already compromised by a disused police box and lamp standard immediately adjacent to the site proposed for telecommunications equipment.   This area of the city hosts a number of educational establishments, and this fact heightens the need to keep pavements as clear and unobstructed as possible.

This application should certainly be refused if it is determined that the benefits of the proposed installation are deemed not to outweigh the harm caused to the conservation area and if there is insufficient evidence that alternative sites or mast sharing opportunities have been adequately explored.  In particular, we would suggest that the disused police box and lamp standard adjacent to the site proposed for telecommunications equipment should be assessed as potential locations for the proposed equipment to protect the amenity of the conservation area and to avoid adding additional pavement obstructions.

We understand the essential requirement for modern telecommunications infrastructure in our city and its importance to residents. However, we believe that, in consultation with local stakeholders, the proposed apparatus should be located in a more inconspicuous location or disaggregated into smaller, less conspicuous arrays if this is achievable.