Lennoxtown residents hit out as 36ft tall telegraph poles appear outside homes

Residents in Lennoxtown and Milton of Campsie have hit out over a “telegraph pole siting blitz” directly outside their homes.

Lennoxtown telegraph poles

The unsightly 36ft tall poles have been erected by Openreach Scotland for broadband cables – but residents are furious they were not informed or consulted.

Lennoxtown man Iain Abercrombie said 16 poles in total were to be installed and added: “This is an urgent area of concern for many local residents. The pole siting ‘blitz’ which took place on the estate on Wednesday was breathtaking.”

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He said there were “serious concerns regarding health and safety with significant machinery, and heavy and long leverage poles being manoeuvred on public footpaths without cordoning or pedestrian access being controlled.”

Residents are being backed in their complaints by local Councillor Paul Ferretti, who has written to Openreach.

He added given there is existing underground infrastructure, it was strange the company have gone for the option of poles.

Councillor Ferretti said: "I understand residents concerns about the impact these installations will have on the visual amenity of the area.

"I have written to Openreach directly to clarify why the existing underground infrastructure was not utilised, and for this option to be used if possible.

"I have also queried why residents were not consulted, or at least informed these poles were to be in installed."

East Dunbartonshire Council boss Ann Davie told the Herald: "Telecommunications providers have permitted development rights to install telegraph poles.

"Planning permission is not needed for them and the Council is unable to take any action about their installation.

"It is the responsibility of BT - or the contractor working on their behalf - to inform residents about their activity and to ensure they adhere to safety practices.

"However, we will arrange for one of our inspectors to visit the location to ensure the required temporary traffic management is in place to ensure the safe movement of vehicles and pedestrians and take any necessary measures to enforce this."

An Openreach spokesperson said they were building “a new ultrafast broadband network to give residents access to gigabit capable services.”

She added: “To reach some properties, we may need to put up a small number of new poles, which need to be in the right place to provide internet, TV and other services, must avoid underground services like gas and water pipes, and meet regulations on space left on the pavement for pedestrians and cyclists .

“All network providers follow a statutory process. We give local authorities 28 days’ notice before we put up poles, and liaise with them if they raise concerns about planned installations. Residents have a year to object to new poles. Details are pinned on the poles.”