PLANS for a new 5G mast next to a popular greenspace has sparked outrage in a rural suburb.

Cignal Infrastructure Limited UK has submitted plans for a 16m high mast on the footpath between a primary school and a childrens play area in Mosley Common, on the outskirts of Tyldesley.

Although the plans come with promises of faster download speed and greater network capacity, there has been steep opposition from locals about the mast being placed in a ‘picturesque’ location.

Residents who live near St. John’s Mosley Common C.E Primary School, next door to where the proposed development would be, believe the need for better connectivity should not come at the expense of greenspace. 

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Leigh Journal: The Mosley Common wheel which is metres away from the proposed 5G mast siteThe Mosley Common wheel which is metres away from the proposed 5G mast site (Image: LDRS)

Beth Fletcher, who lives opposite the proposed site, said: “5G is needed around here, but the location picked should be better. It will disturb the picturesque view of the green. 

“There are lots of different places it could’ve been put. They’ve chosen the worst location.

“For me it’s not particularly the mast, but the substation that is the issue. There is a school and a park there. 

“The kids could fall into the road with the cabinet taking up a large amount of space. Legally I’m sure it’s fine but from a practical point of view, if it didn’t cause an accident I’d be shocked.

“If you have a few kids, it will be on a narrowed path which is impacted. I’d be shocked if someone doesn’t get knocked over or an accident happens.”

Leigh Journal: Mosley Common ParkMosley Common Park (Image: LDRS)

Beth described the area as a community hub, and with lots of children coming to and from the area using the play area or going to school. In addition to concerns over the mast being an eyesore, residents also worry about the traffic congestion during construction. 

Mosley Common Road, where this would be built, is already a hotspot for heavy traffic. Although the new mast cannot be built on the greenspace itself due to it being common land, it will tower over the popular dog walking spot from the adjacent footpath. 

Leigh Journal: Peter JonesPeter Jones (Image: LDRS)

Peter Jones, who lives on Commonside Road which looks directly onto where the mast would be built, said: “I would rather have grass than better signal, I’m old fashioned. I use the internet but I don’t have trouble or outages.

“We have Sky, but nothing ultra fast for gaming or anything like that. This is another step towards modernity. 

“I moved in 40 years ago when it was all just fields around here. All this road is full of people in their 70’s and 80’s.

“This would have no benefit to people on this street but they would have to look at the mast every day.”

Leigh Journal: Chris HaygarthChris Haygarth (Image: LDRS)

Although the planning application has seen dozens of objections, there is still need for better connectivity, according to residents. With this mast it is a case of right plan, wrong location for locals.

Chris Haygarth, who was out on a dog walk with Fox Terriers Bob and Dottie, said: “I think it’s a great idea as we don’t have great signal around here. I can see it would be an eyesore for people right next to it though. 

“I think it’s got to go somewhere and we have to have it for better connectivity. The positives outweigh the negatives and it can’t take too long to put up so road disruption won’t be too bad.”

There is also scepticism in the area about objecting to the plans after seeing their voices go unheard in regard to a nearby planning application for 1,050 new homes on the grassland to the north of the mast site. 

“It’s going to go through no matter what we say,” John added. “It’s because they’ve rejected the other appeal from locals so I can’t see the council listening to this one.

“It will be a shame and blot on the landscape. Those two areas are supposed to be kept as a public space, so they will be going back on that word if they build a mast there. 

“We all need the Wi-Fi and better coverage in the area – I have to get 5G on my phone as well. So it’s good in that way I suppose.”

Leigh Journal: Cllr James FishCllr James Fish (Image: Independent Network)

Coun James Fish, representative for Tyldesley and Mosley Common, has submitted a letter of objection to the planning team about the proposal which echoes the thoughts of residents who fear how this could impact visually and practically on their village.

In a statement, Coun Fish said: “I would just like to thank all the residents who raised objections to the proposed installation of a 5G mast on Mosley Common Road. I share the resident’s views that this is the wrong location for this infrastructure, I hope this planning application is rejected on the issues that the residents and I have raised.”

Wigan Council are yet to make a decision on the 5G mast plans.