No action on Stonehaven telegraph pole

Aberdeenshire Council is to take no action following the erection of a telegraph pole on a Stonehaven Street.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 21st January 2022, 8:35 am
The telegraph pole appeared without warning on January 17.
The telegraph pole appeared without warning on January 17.

Concerned resident Stuart Alexander of High Street contacted the council’s planning enforcement team and also wrote to his local councillors after the pole appeared without warning on Monday, January 17.

Mr Alexander stated that the pole was not in keeping with the local built heritage and environment and had a much greater scale and impact than any of the other locally sited masts and street lights.

He also said it was very visible from within the Conservation Area of the harbour and affects the views of Jubilee House on Keith Place, the lane down to the sea past A-listed Rivendell, the B-listed Town House/Clock tower and Cross area and to and from the harbour including Duthie’s Well.

“The rest of Stonehaven seems to be benefiting from ground-based fibre installations, but the one conservation area the town has gets a 40ft pole. Although the erection of the telegraph pole may have been allowed through the 'permitted development' legislation, I feel it is wrong that there has been zero consultation beforehand with the local community.

"Had views been sought, there would have been a clear majority against such an eyesore and a preference for some temporary disruption so underground routing could be carried out.”

In response to his letter, Councillor Sarah Dickinson said that she was advised that there was no requirement for BT or any other Telecoms operator to seek planning permission, or even provide notification to the council.

She said: “I am not, though, clear what officers can do if operators are simply allowed to put this infrastructure in place but I do think, particularly in the old town, there are unacceptable impacts and I will ask to have the issue on the agenda of our next ward meeting on February 1.”

Mr Alexander received a call last week from a member of the enforcement team stating that the case had been accepted in error and there would be no further action due to the installation being permitted under article 67 of the ‘General Permitted Development (Scotland) Act.