Locals vow to fight 15m mast in Castleknock

by Sylvia Pownall

Castleknock residents opposed to plans for a 15-metre phone mast
close to a school, creche and church are stepping up their protest campaign.

A public meeting was held on Tuesday in Kavanagh’s pub at Laurel Lodge shopping centre to discuss the controversial decision to permit the telecommunications tower. An Bord Pleanala granted permission for the mast at the entrance to the shopping centre, which is just 50 metres from Scoil Thomais NS and close to the community centre, creche and church.

The board ruled in favour of an appeal by Shared Access despite the fact that it had rejected an application for a mast of a lower height (12m) at the
same location just months earlier.

No To Mast action group spokesperson Derek Lambert told Dublin Gazette:

“This mast could represent a potential health risk to all the children in the school and Montessori/ creche and people living in the surrounding area.

“The structure would have an unduly negativeimpact on the visual and residential amenities of the Laurel Lodge area, and consequently for people who live there.”

Local Labour representative John Walsh, who has also been a vocal objector, called on developer Shared Access Ltd to drop its plans for a mast in the shops car park which he said is a “totally appropriate

He told Dublin Gazette: “The developer, SharedAccess Ltd, should withdraw this flawed proposal at this stage and workwith the council to find an alternative site. “The decision to grant permission in this locationbeggars belief.

There is no agreement between the local businesses and the developer for this mast, and it has caused a great deal of concern and anxiety among local residents.”

Fingal County Council, which refused permission for both mast applications, is powerless to prevent the development because an objective
prohibiting the erection of mobile phone masts within 200 metres of a
school was not included in the current County Development Plan, on
foot of Government guidance.

Meanwhile, the director of Laurel Lodge Shopping Centre Management Ltd,
said the shops collectively have had no discussions with Shared Access and
there is no agreement in place.

In a letter to the action group, Dominic Kenna added: “We can definitely
say that we will not be going ahead with the building of that mast now or at any stage in the future.

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