30
Sep
2005

Mast plan fails

FAMILIES who opposed an application for a mobile phone mast have heaved a sigh of relief after the council refused planning permission.

Public notices displayed to provide residents with information about the proposed development on Queen’s Drive, Ossett, failed to say it was a telecommunications mast and showed an incorrect council telephone number leaving residents unaware of the situation.

The deadline for objections was extended to last Friday due to the mistake and concerned homeowners collected hundreds of signatures against the proposal.

But the council this week said the T Mobile application to erect a mast had been refused

Linda Neville, 33, of Queen’s Drive, gathered 195 signatures against the proposal. She said: “I'm totally relieved. I honestly thought we were doomed and it would go up.

“I’m so pleased for my little girl because I was really worried about how it would effect her health. She’s only 22-months-old and that is one of the reasons I organised a petition.

“The government released a white paper deterring the use of mobile phones by children and though it didn’t include phone masts there’s got to be some significance for children living near them. I didn’t think this was a suitable area for a phone mast to be. It’s a highly-populated residential area.

“It was worth collecting all those signatures. I would advise people who live near proposed masts to fight them because you can win.

“I’m going to be able to sleep soundly at night now knowing my daughter will grow up healthy.”

Wakefield Council planning officer Sarah Bird said: “Prior approval for the siting and appearance has not been granted.

“Because the initial notice didn’t include the word telecommunication we issued new notices and extended the consultation period as soon as this was brought to our attention.”

The proposed mast would have be attached to a lamppost on the pavement outside the Two Brewer’s pub.

Campaigners said equipment for the mast, which would have been placed in a box on the pavement, would have restricted mobility for people using the walkway.

Anti-mast campaigner Maureen Thorpe, of Towngate, also collected 180 signatures objecting to the proposal.

She said: “The deadline was extended because they missed ‘telecommunications’ out of the description on the public notice.

“Most people had no idea there was an application for a phone mast. I think there was insufficient information.”

30 September 2005

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