To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions, pursuant to his answer of 2 June 1997, Official Report, columns 48–49, on applications for telecommunications masts, if he will list the types of serious threat to amenity which might give sufficient grounds for rejecting an application. 
An application for prior approval determination allows the local planning authority the opportunity to say whether they wish to approve, within 28 days, details of the siting and appearance of a telecommunications mast permitted under the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995. It is for the local planning authority to determine whether the siting or appearance of the development would pose a serious threat to amenity on a case by case basis. Guidance on factors the authority may take into consideration when determining whether to give or refuse such approval is contained in Planning Policy Guidance note 8 and Appendix E to Circular 9/95. The answer given by my hon. Friend the Minister for the Regions, Regeneration and Planning on 4 November 1997, Official Report, columns 152–53, announced a further factor for consideration in these circumstances.
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many local authority planning refusals for telecommunications masts were overturned on appeal by planning inspectors in (a) 1994–95, (b) 1995–96 and (c) 1996–97. 
The number of appeals allowed against local authority refusals for telecommunications masts/towers information is as follows:
|Year||Total number of mast appeals||Number of appeals allowed|
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many redundant telecommunications masts have been removed; and if he will list their locations: (2) if he will make a statement on the procedures in place to monitor the removal of redundant telecommunications masts. 
Development carried out by a telecommunications code system operator under the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995 is subject to the condition that apparatus shall be removed as soon as reasonably practicable after it is no longer required for telecommunications purposes. Where telecommunications development requires a planning application to the local planning authority, it is open to the authority to impose a similar condition on any planning permission granted. It is for the local planning authority to take any necessary enforcement action where they consider that planning conditions have not been observed. In addition, the provisions of the Telecommunications Act 1984 allow occupiers of land to require the removal of redundant apparatus from their land where access for the purposes of installing that apparatus was originally granted to the operator under the Code Powers granted to them by that Act. Data on the number of redundant masts removed are not held centrally.
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many telecommunication posts (a) under 15 metres and (b) over 15 metres were erected in the United Kingdom in each of the years since 1993 to the latest available date. 
This information is not collected centrally. We attach considerable importance to minimising the environmental impact of telecommunications mast development. It is for the that reason that my hon. Friend the Minister for the Regions, Regeneration and Planning recently stated our expectation that operators will provide evidence to local authorities that they have carefully considered the use of existing masts, buildings and other structures before seeking to erect any new mast.