A MOBILE phone mast is looking likely for one of Burnley's busiest junctions - prompting anger from local residents.

Planning chiefs said they will be "morally obliged" to approve proposals for a 43-foot high attenae for the junction of Rossendale Road, Manchester Road and Glen View Road after rejecting a bid by Vodafone for the Summit Works.

An investigation by the telecoms giant identified the Summit Works as the ideal location to improve their coverage in the town's Rosehill area.

Previously Burnley's development control committee had rejected another Vodaphone scheme for the Manchester Road and Rossendale Road crossroads, because it was too close to neighbouring homes.

Planning officers insisted the earlier application was the best alternative as it would blend ino the existing area, and be indistinguishable among various lamp-posts and trees.

Councillors were told that the committee could not keep declining alternative mobile phone mast plans without risking an appeal and the authority incurring heavy costs awards.

Mobile phone firms have been given development rights by the government, once a need has been proven and a health certificate obtained, leaving their locations as the only factor which councils can decide upon.

Council lawyer David Grady added: "You are morally bound to accept, if you refuse this application, to accept the Manchester Road and Rossendale Road junction plans. You would be saying that you consider this to be the best site."

But councillors were adamant that the scheme for the Summit Works, which already hosts a taller mast, should be dismissed.

Coun Bill Bennett said: "It is 43-feet high and to me this is a gateway into the town. It is shown as only a thin line but it is going to be so big that it would stick out among everything else around it."

Carol Galbraith, 53, who lives near the junction on Manchester Road, said: "It is about time the councillors thought about the people of Burnley. These proposal has twice been turned down already for obvious reasons and it is illogical why it is planned for here but was refused at the Summit."

Ian Galbraith, 57, added: "This is supposed to be the modern gateway into the town but now the council want to stick a 40-foot mast here, it will be the first thing people see when they come to Burnley."

Pete Holmes, 45, who lives opposite the planned mast on Rossendale Road, said: "Last time the whole street was against the mast and I can't see that changing. There are health issues with these masts and to erect it in a busy resedential area seems crazy.”

Lee Massey, 36, who also lives on Rossendale Road, added: "The thing would just be an eyesore."