RTÉ has appealed a decision by Kerry County Council to refuse planning permission to erect a 36-metre transmission mast on the Slieve Mish mountains.
The local authority has refused permission on the grounds that the mast would seriously injure the amenities of the area and the character of the landscape.
RTÉ said the mast would be used to provide digital television to Kerry viewers and it is a necessary upgrade of the old analogue transmission which is expected to be turned off by 2012.
The 36-metre lattice mast, containing a number of dishes, was to be located alongside existing television and mobile phone masts at Knockmoyle mountain, Killeenafinnane Slieve Mish. The location is a well-known beauty spot on a small road between Blennerville and Castle-maine.
In its application, RTÉ said that digital technology cannot be accommodated on the existing masts.
"This site could be described as being part of the backbone of the network and vital for Kerry transmission," the company argued.
The council received objections from local landowners who said that RTÉ had no permission to use their private roadway to access the location.
Following the council’s rejection of the application, RTÉ has referred the matter to the planning appeals board, An Bord Plean·la. A decision on the appeal is expected to be made by October of this year.
RTÉ said that failure to secure permission for the mast will prevent vital digital television services being transmitted and the company described the proposed mast as a vital cog in the RTÉ network.
© The Kerryman
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