Operator-backed pressure group Mobile UK urged local and national governments to update planning regulations and ensure mobile connectivity is a prerequisite at the planning stage of urban and rural developments.
At a parliamentary reception launching the Building Mobile Britain campaign, representatives from Mobile UK called on politicians to engage with operators and ensure access to land, the power grid and fibre in sites needed for mobile infrastructure.
Echoing comments made by operators and regulator Ofcom at the Connected Britain event earlier this year, Mobile UK head of policy and communications Gareth Elliott also called on authorities to ensure mobile connectivity was central in designs for new developments including housing, industrial estates and roads.
“Building networks that provide mobile connectivity is not the sole responsibility of mobile network operators,” Elliott told the assembled politicians. “Yes, they build the physical network, but to do so requires a high level of partnership between many stakeholders.”
“This is all the more important at this time as coverage expectations increase in the hardest to reach areas and the next generation of mobile technology is going to be more and more complex and costly to install,” he added.
MP Stephen Hammond, who backs the campaign, described mobile as: “one of the most important parts of the [country’s] infrastructure for the next 75 years,” adding rule changes were needed to ensure the UK had “a digital economy that will be the best in the world.”
Mobile UK is backed by the country’s four MNOs: Vodafone UK; BT-owned EE; Telefonica brand O2; and CK Hutchison’s 3 UK. Its latest campaign is also supported by a number of local and national politicians.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back