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The jubilation in March that Cheshire East Council refused EE permission for the installation of a mast at Penningtons Lane had turned into dismay as it transpires that, due to an administrative blunder and a technicality EE has gained permission and plans to proceed with its installation.
The application was a ‘prior approval’ where CEC had a strict 56 days to inform Harlequin, EE’s agents, of a decision refusing or granting approval. Unlike a standard planning application, failure to advise the applicant of the decision within the 56 day period results in deemed consent. It transpires that Cheshire East Council failed to issue its decision in a timely fashion – it arriving with Harlequin on the 57th day. Cheshire East Council has confirmed that this was sent by 2nd class post, their ordinary practice given the volume of post they issue, but that they failed to issue the decision by email at the same time.
The Parish Council has written to the Chief Executive of EE appealing to their morality not to proceed with the mast given the clear community opposition. You can read the letter here: Letter to EE.
The Parish Council has also written to the Leader of Cheshire East Council imploring the council to find a solution to the mess by finding an alternative site for the mast – such as the council owned playing fields. You can read the letter here: Letter to Cheshire East Council.