Call to halt mobile phone masts

Last posted: Wednesday 1 June 2005 16:33

Bolton Evening News

CALLS are being made for mobile phone mast applications in Bolton to be suspended until the outcome of a new investigation into any hazards they pose is known.

Cllr Carl Dennis wants a freeze on all applications to erect masts across the borough.

He made the call after three new bids were lodged to build phone masts in his Harper Green ward.

Cllr Dennis has backed campaigns opposing each of the masts over fears that they could impact on the health of people living nearby.

He said: "We should not be granting permission to build these things close to homes and schools when we do not know how dangerous they could be. I understand that people use mobiles and that they need masts, but I believe we should try and put them as far away from people's homes as possible."

T-Mobile has applied to erect a mast in Highfield Road outside John's Chippy and Vodaphone wants to build a mast outside the Conservative Club in Plodder Lane .

Rival firm O2 has appealed to the Secretary of State against Bolton Council's planning committee's decision to refuse its application for a mast outside the Flying Shuttle pub, also in Highfield Road .

The two new applications are due to be heard by the councillors over the next few weeks, but current planning rules prevent members of the committee from rejecting the schemes on safety grounds.

Cllr Dennis, who is a governor at the Highfield Community Primary School , near to the proposed mast sites, said: "We all have concerns over the health risks involved with these masts, but can do nothing about it. I would like to see all applications held over until the outcome of this Government investigation into the safety of masts is completed."

But Cllr David Wilkinson, executive member for environment at Bolton Council, said: "There are lingering doubts over the safety of these masts but we have to abide by the law.

"What Cllr Dennis is asking for would require the Government to introduce a major change in planning rules because at the moment they tell us we should be prepared to support the installation of phone masts."


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Juni 2005

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