THE installation of a 20 metre telecoms tower within ‘one of the most splendid landscapes of the National Park’ has been met with consternation and outrage by local residents.

Cornerstone is applying to Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority (PCNPA) to install a 20-metre-high, timber clad telecoms tower on land opposite the National Trust Car Park in Trehilyn West, Trefasser.

The site is within the Pen Caer Registered Historic Landscape. It is located between the two Iron Age hill forts of Garn Fawr Camp and Garn Fechan Camp, both Scheduled Monuments, with two Grade II Listed buildings located within 200 metres of the site.

The tower would also be within view of what is known as John Piper’s cottages, where the influential 20th century artist, stayed to paint the surrounding landscape.

In 2013 one of his paintings of Garn Fawr sold at Christie’s for in excess of £37,000.

The tower would be a timber clad monopole supporting three antennas and two 0.6 metre dishes. There would also be an equipment cabinet, a meter cabinet and associated ancillary equipment enclosed within a two-metre-high security fence and gorse bush.

It is highly likely that the tower would also have to be connected to the National Grid using power lines or cables.

A heritage statement on behalf of the applicants states that the tower’s impact on the overall significance of the Registered Historic Landscape would be ‘slight’ and ‘minor’.

Cadw too has not voiced opposition to the application, stating that it has no objection in regards to the scheduled monuments of Garn Gilfach Burial Chamber, Garn Fawr Camp, Dinas Mawr Camp and Garn Fechan Camp.

However, PCNA Building Conservation Officer Rob Scourfield has recommended the application for refusal stating: “The mast will have a significant impact on the setting of a number of listed buildings, chiefly Garn-fawr and Studio Cottage both of which sit within one of the most splendid landscapes of the National Park.

"I would recommend refusal.”

Locals too are up in arms about the effect of the proposed tower.

“This Mast will be visible for miles and is considered to be to the detriment of this iconic area.

"It is within a stone’s throw of the Piper Cottages the famous artist who painted the area,” said Llandruidion resident Jill Rowley.

“There has been no consultation with the local community council, there has been no notice posted in the area, which I understand is a legal requirement for all planning projects.

“No one locally seems to have heard about it. This is a travesty for this iconic landmark.”

Karen Roden another local added: We are increasingly reliant on our mobile phones, and so many living in or visiting an area which, apparently, lacks good coverage, may well welcome an improved service. However, this is a sensitive location in Pencaer, and Cornerstone does not appear to have consulted closely with either the National Park (NP) or the local community.”

The planning application NP/24/0144/PNT is available to view and be commented on on the national park’s planning portal.

“This is unlike the majority of planning applications as there is only 28 days for the NP to respond, and opportunity for local people to object is limited,” said Karen.

“The application was registered with the NP on March 8, so the clock is ticking.”