A 70ft(22.5m) telecommunications tower is set to be constructed on the edge of Whitchurch despite residents concerns over the impact on nearby properties.

Applicant Icon Tower Infrastructure proposed the mast and various other telecommunications equipment for land at the Raven Cafe at Prees Heath near the junction of the A41 and A49.

They said the scheme would provide shared infrastructure which could be used by all four of the UK’s major mobile network operators to improve mobile phone connectivity in the area.

Residents had expressed concerns about the visual impact of the tower, with on objector describing it as “prominent and obtrusive”, and called on Shropshire Council to conduct an impact assessment on the effect on property values in the nearby Angus Gardens area.

However a report from Shropshire Council’s planning officer concluded that the mast was well screened from nearby houses, and would be in-keeping with the largely “commercial context” of the nearby businesses.


“Whilst the public comment is noted, impact on house values is not a material planning consideration,” it said.

“The dwellings to the south west, whilst visible from the site, are separated from the site and the car park in which the site sits, by existing planting/trees, along its southern boundary.

“It is considered that the mast would be primarily read and viewed in conjunction with the surrounding commercial context outlined above and on this basis, its siting and appearance would not be considered as discordant or incongruous in this setting.”

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The applicant said that 19 alternative sites had been considered in the area – but none of them were deemed suitable due to highway safety concerns, parking, visual prominence, proximity to overhead lines, and a range of other issues.

Siting the six new antennae on an existing mast adjacent to the site had also been discounted due to there being insufficient space on the tower for the new equipment.

The scheme was supported by Whitchurch Rural Parish Council, and had received a positive response from Shropshire Council infrastructure project team Connecting Shropshire.

“Improving mobile phone coverage is a key strategic objective for Shropshire Council which aims to improve access to high speed mobile phone coverage and reduce areas with poor connectivity,” they said.

“Improved digital infrastructure supports the Shropshire economy, contributing to the Healthy Economy priority. Installing infrastructure for all four MNO’s with access to shared structure makes sense, improving coverage whilst facilitating the removal/consolidation of pre-existing mobile phone infrastructure.”