A PROPOSAL has been put forward to construct a new 5G telecommunications mast in Barrow.

CK Hutchison Networks (UK) Ltd has submitted a request to Westmorland and Furness Council to determine whether prior approval is needed to install a 15-metre-high mast on Salthouse Road.

The exact location would be opposite 23 Salthouse Road, on a pavement adjacent to a grass verge, and would include a wraparound cabinet at the base of the mast with other associated equipment.

A planning statement submitted with the application explains the need for the 5G mast and the suitability of the particular site.

It says: "CK Hutchison Networks are in the process of supporting the UK Government's digital connectivity objective and providing a critical role in building the UK's fastest mobile network to provide improved coverage and capacity, most notably in relation to 5G services.

"The very nature of installing new 5G mast infrastructure within such an urban setting requires a highly considered balance between the need to extend practical coverage reach with that of increasing risk of visual amenity intrusion.

"In this location, existing mast sites are not capable of supporting additional equipment to extend coverage reach across the target area and prospective 'in-fill' mast sites are extremely limited.

"There is an acute need for a new base station to provide effective service coverage and in this case, the height of the proposed street pole is the minimum required to bring the benefits of 5G to this area.

"The proposed location of the new mast will assimilate well into the immediate street scene and not be detrimental.

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"Such development will facilitate educational benefits, providing access to vital services, improving communications with the associated commercial benefits for local businesses, enabling e-commerce and working from home, as well as enjoying access to social media and gaming for leisure time activities."

The statement says that the mast is required to provide coverage for the Three network.

It says: "The National Planning Policy Framework clearly states that authorities should NOT question the need for this service, nor seek to prevent competition between operators."

Six nearby alternative locations were dismissed due to narrow pavements and/or proximity to residential properties.

These include Rawlinson Street, Greengate Street, School Street, Argyle Street, and Albert Street.