DOZENS of people have objected to plans for a 20m phone mast in a village.

Wireless Infrastructure Group (WIG) had its bid for a tower in Fingringhoe dismissed at appeal in 2018.

It wanted to build a 25 metre-high tower on land in Church Road.

Concerned residents feared it would be like “having the Eiffel Tower at the bottom of their gardens”.

The firm has submitted a prior approval application to Colchester Council for a 20m mast at the same location.

If agreed, it would be equivalent to the height of four double-decker buses.

The application also sees the removal of three antenna from the mast.

But residents have remained steadfast in their objections to the mast.

Wivenhoe councillor Andrea Luxford Vaughan has called in the application and asked for it to be decided by the planning committee.

The application said the mast would deliver replacement 2G and 3G and will introduce 4G to the area.

It added when a temporary mast has to be removed the mobile network coverage in the area would be “very poor”.

But residents are unhappy with the impact the mast may have on the surrounding area.

One objection said: “The visual impact on the landscape will be devastating, with any mitigation relying upon trees that are deciduous and owned and maintained by others.

“As per our previous objection, the tower would lie right in the path of birds using the estuary and will be a blight for all those looking out from Wivenhoe.”

Another added: “The 20m mast is out of character with the surrounding area and it will be visible on the site.

“It will be visible for a considerable distance and destroy the rural beauty of the village and surroundings.”

Fingringhoe Parish Council has also objected to the plans. In a submission it said: “The proposed development is inappropriate, visually harmful and obstructive at this site which is adjacent to a Site of Special Scientific Interest, Fingringhoe Wick, and less than 200m from the bank of the River Colne.”

“The mast will be visible from Wivenhoe.”

Network provider EE’s small telecom mast was removed from Rowhedge wharf about a year ago to make way for a large housing estate at Rowhedge riverside.