Villagers fear they're next for phone masts as tests are carried out

FEARS that a mobile phone mast could be erected on council-owned grass verges near Harrogate have been raised with a local councillor.

Reception tests for a potential mast in the Weeton area alongside the Harrogate-Bradford Road have already been carried out. Others are due to follow in the same area.

Residents are now concerned that the tests could be followed by a planning application for a mast on a highway verge after some companies have complained about poor reception in the area.

County Coun Cliff Trotter (Con Pannal and Lower Wharfedale) said local people were worried that tests had been carried out on a grass verge belonging to the county council when they believed these sites would be immune for masts.

After speaking to highway and planning chiefs at North Yorkshire Coun Trotter has been told there is no specific policy as to whether mobile phone masts are allowed on such council land or not.

Coun Trotter said: "I am raising this issue at the North Yorkshire County Council area committee this week.

It is vital that a clear ruling is given on this issue."

"Residents are worried that masts could be erected on verges and they have wider concerns about their closeness to traffic and pedestrians, apart from the impact they would cause in areas of high quality landscape," he added.

Meanwhile, land owners in the Lower Wharfedale area have already been asked if companies can test mobile reception in the area.

One mast 26ft high has already been tested in a roadside verge.

18 November 2005



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November 2005

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