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Planning rules end man's love affair with amateur radio in Canning Town

PUBLISHED: 20:00 21 January 2013

Disabled Keith Crosby is angry at the council decision to put the aerial for his amateur radio down from the council block where he lives.

Disabled Keith Crosby is angry at the council decision to put the aerial for his amateur radio down from the council block where he lives.

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A disabled man with a love of amateur radio faces having his aerial confiscated by council officers.

Newham Council staff turned up at the home of Keith Crosby on Tuesday to tell him he doesn’t have planning permission to continue his amateur radio hobby - also known as ham radio.

Keith, who lives on his own in a ground floor council flat in Exning Road, Canning Town, put up the equipment outside his block with the help from a friend 16 months ago but he says this is the first time he has had any opposition to it.

Keith, 47, says the old fashioned pasttime improves his quality of life as he doesn’t have a television and he doesn’t get out much because he has severe mobility problems after he suffered a fall that shattered his kneecaps and his spine.

He said: “What am I meant to do now? I use it to stay in contact with other people and to educate myself because there are scientific aspects to it as well.

“I just really enjoy it and I can’t really get out in this cold weather. I’ve counted 32 satellite dishes down my road that aren’t meant to be there but they’re more worried about my radio aerial?”

A spokesperson for Newham Council said: “Other residents have complained about the aerial, including the noise it makes in high winds. He did not ask permission for this and we have asked the resident to remove it.

“He has refused to do so even though it is fixed to another property two floors above his. Given his personal circumstances we have written to him offering to assist him with removing the aerial.

“If he does not accept this we will begin legal proceedings.”

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