18-metre 5G mast proposed for edge of Primrose Hill

Where the new mast would stand, if approved

Where the new mast would stand, if approved - Credit: Google

Plans have been lodged for an 18-metre 5G telecommunications mast on the edge of the park at Primrose Hill.

Three, the UK’s main 5G network provider, has submitted proposals to Camden Council for a street pole and three cabinets on the footpath opposite the junction of Fitzroy Road and Regent's Park Road.  

The mast is designed to increase internet speeds in Primrose Hill around Chalcot Road and Fitzroy Road.  

The applicant says the site has been “specifically selected to minimise visual impact upon the immediate and wider area” – but some local residents have criticised the "unsightly" proposals.   

As of May 26, five objections had been uploaded to Camden’s planning portal.  

One from a local resident says: "Erecting a mast on such a sensitive site would be absolute vandalism, in that it would destroy the precious sensation of freedom and 'a place to breathe' that the green space and open sky, offered by Regent's Park Road and Primrose Hill.

"Impediments, such as this mast, would utterly destroy a valuable and rare piece of open space which is much needed in our congested city.

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"The beautiful surroundings are enjoyed, not only by residents but millions of visitors. Erection of the mast will only serve to degrade the area."

Another resident, whose bedroom would look onto the new mast, called the plans "ugly" and "unsightly", and that they would "spoil one of London's most prized vistas". 

Mick Hudspeth, the CEO of Primrose Hill Community Association, said: "An 18m mast in the sightlines of a major London park and tourist attraction is out of order, it is also in a conservation area, and right outside of a 250 bed sheltered housing scheme (Oldfield Estate)."

Cllr Richard Cotton (Lab, Camden Town with Primrose Hill) said: "Primrose Hill is a unique environment and indeed the view from the top is one of the few views in London that is protected by statute. The proposed 18m mast is entirely inappropriate and should be sited elsewhere."

People enjoy the warm weather and sunshine on Primrose Hill in north London. Picture date: Tuesday M

The view from Primrose Hill - Credit: PA Images

Initial plans for a 20m pole were reduced to 18m after a pre-planning application consultation.   

A spokesperson for Three said: “5G rollout is vital for residents and businesses in Primrose Hill.

"We want to offer the community a reliable network experience and this site will be critical to making that happen.

"While we try to keep mast sites as unobtrusive as possible, they do need to be situated where people will be using the service and, in many cases, in precise locations to ensure the widest breadth of coverage.”

Three is a subsidiary of Hutchison 3G UK Limited. Residents can comment on the plans until June 16.  

For more information, enter the application number 2021/1813/P on Camden’s planning portal.