READERS of the Wiltshire Times may be interested to know about the proposal for a new telecommunications mast on the BT site at the top of Market Street in Bradford on Avon.

This will affect a view which is known and loved by very many people, not only the residents nearby, because the mast is very close to the church spire. The first planning application, at the beginning of this year, was withdrawn after a public outcry. The design has been slightly modified and now resubmitted.

Since the earlier application I have become even more aware of the beautiful sight which is the spire of Christchurch in Bradford on Avon. On the crest of the hill it can be seen from miles away as you approach the town, from all points of the compass. Equally, in town itself, you turn a corner or walk up one of our steep streets and there it is before you: slender and graceful. The spire stands alone on the skyline with only some tall well-established trees nearby, which give it a natural setting. It deserves to remain protected.

This new planning application gives very scant information about the proposed design. The timing of the application (submitted at the start of the summer holidays) suggests the applicants believe the design will ‘cause trouble’, and they want to slide it past public attention.

The new mast is situated too close to the church spire – we must not take such a risk. Our national telecommunications network can be developed by other, less intrusive, means – not just the cheapest, which suits Telefonica. The proposed mast may well wreck this classic English landscape.

‘Lines of Sight’ have been specifically included as requiring protection in the Neighbourhood Plan for Bradford on Avon. (Included also in its amended form which is now about to go to referendum for approval.) The Neighbourhood Plan must not be avoided by undemocratic tactics such as hasty planning consent. Wiltshire Council needs to show leadership in their protection of the English landscape which is so precious a feature of this historic county.

I object to this mast because I love this skyline. I ask other readers of the Wiltshire Times to have a look at the application (Number 17/06967/PNTEL) and submit their own comments.

Kate Nottage


Bradford on Avon