Q&As

An operator has an agreement under the Electronic Communications Code with Landowner A (on whose land telecoms equipment is situated). Landowner B, A's neighbour, is planning to redevelop its land. The redevelopment will affect the operator's network both during and after construction. B has not served a paragraph 20 notice on the operator. What steps can the operator take to avoid interruption to its network? Can the operator claim its costs of relocation from B?

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Published on LexisPSL on 27/07/2015

The following Planning Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • An operator has an agreement under the Electronic Communications Code with Landowner A (on whose land telecoms equipment is situated). Landowner B, A's neighbour, is planning to redevelop its land. The redevelopment will affect the operator's network both during and after construction. B has not served a paragraph 20 notice on the operator. What steps can the operator take to avoid interruption to its network? Can the operator claim its costs of relocation from B?
  • Does Landowner B have to serve a paragraph 20 notice?
  • Can the operator claim its costs of relocation from Landowner B if an alteration order is made under paragraph 20?
  • Remedies for interruption to the operator’s network
  • Unauthorised removal or physical damage to the operators equipment
  • No physical damage, but interference with network signals

Does Landowner B have to serve a paragraph 20 notice?

In the event that Landowner B needs the operator’s equipment to be physically moved from its location on Landowner A’s site, failing which it would create an obstacle to the development or would suffer physical damage as a result of the development, Landowner B will need to serve a paragraph 20 notice for alteration (ie removal or relocation) of the operator’s equipment. This is on the basis that paragraph 20 also covers persons with an interest in adjacent land who wish to redevelop ('improvement' includes redevelop for the purposes of the Code (Telecommunications Act 1984, Sch 2).

In the event that a paragraph 20 notice is served by Landowner B and the operator served a counter-notice in response, Landowner B would have to apply to court for an order for the alteration, in respect of which the court must make the order for alteration only if, having regard to all of the circumstances and to the principle that no person should unreasonably be denied access to an electronic communications network, it is satisfied that the alteration:

  1. is necessary for landowner B to carry out their development

  2. will not substantially interfere with any service which is or is likely to be provided using the operator’s network

Furthermore, if the alteration would require removal onto another landowner’s site, the

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