Welwyn Hatfield District Plan review - deposit version January 2001 - extract re

Brookmans Park Transmitting Station (BPTS)

The BPTS lies within the Green Belt. It is recognised however that because of the advantages of concentrating telecommunications development at the existing site where technical infrastructure is already in situ, very special circumstances may exist which justify further telecommunications development at this site.

In view of the station's location within the green belt, the Council has sought to strictly control such development and to see appropriate landscaping introduced to screen the technical installation from view. In 1995, the Council therefore adopted, in conjunction with the BBC, a master plan covering the future expansion of telecommunications development at the site. This master plan also included a landscaping scheme to screen the site. This was the subject of public consultation and has been adopted as supplementary planning guidance. It now forms the basis for determining planing applications for further telecommunications development at the BPTS, supplemented by Policy R19 (see below). In the light of continuing change in telecommunications technology, it is proposed to review and update the master plan.

Policy R19 - telecommunications development

In considering proposals for telecomm. development, the Council will require the following criteria to be met.

  1. For new free standing masts, the applicant must be able to demonstrate that there are technical reasons which prevent the installation of the apparatus on existing masts, buildings, or other structures.
  2. New free standing masts must have sufficient spare capacity to allow mast sharing, subject to any technical or other environmental constraints, which will be secured by the use of planning conditions or section 106 agreements.
  3. All applications and determinations must be accompanied by information on the level of emissions likely to be generated by the installation and the level of emissions must fall within the ICNIRP (International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection) guidelines and the advice contained in PPG8 in relation to emissions near school grounds and buildings.
  4. Clear public exclusion zones should be placed around all base station antennae together with appropriate warning signs.
  5. For all telecomms. development, including mobile phone installations, domestic satellite equipment and radio masts:
  6. the development must not harm the appearance of the street scene nor appear visually intrusive.
  7. The development must not harm the character of a conservation area nor the character and setting of a listed building.
  8. If erected on a building, it must not be out of keeping with the building, in terms of siting, scale, size, profile and colour, so as to harm the appearance of the building.
  9. If proposed in areas designated for their landscape, historic or nature conservation importance, including conservation areas and the Green Belt, applications must be able to demonstrate why sites outside these areas cannot be used.