2
Jun
2005

MP sympathises with fears over plans to expand mast

Cowbridge Today

ARGUMENTS over the siting of equipment for the new 3G telecommunication equipment continue to rage, and residents at The Heathers are angry about plans for the base station in the grounds of Barry College . Now, Vale MP John Smith has met with the residents to show his support for their campaign. He told The GEM: “My sympathies and concerns are with the residents who have already had to endure the siting of a mast in their midst. “I have lodged an objection in respect of the visual amenity of the site. I am aware that there are planning guidelines in place that permit this sort of development, but it is up to local planning authorities to take into account the fears and concerns of residents.” He added: “I will be writing to the mobile phone companies to make them aware of my concerns.” The battle lines remain between the companies, who say that they are operating well within safety margins - and opponents who claim that there is fresh scientific evidence casting doubt on the safety of masts. A spokesperson for Orange said: “It has been a long-standing Government policy objective to encourage telecommunications operators, wherever possible, to share masts and sites as a means of reducing overall mast numbers. “The reality is that the local community want to use mobile phones, and without masts the phones won’t work”. O2 and Vodaphone are proposing to site their equipment on the Orange-owned base station, after protestors opposed the erection of masts at Severn Avenue and Bryn Hafren comprehensive school. The spokesman added: “ Orange is aware of the anxiety the proposals are causing in the area and is planning to hold a drop-in session to discuss residents' concerns.” Mrs Angie Homer, a spokesperson for the residents at The Heathers, claimed that scientists were warning that the microwaves emitted by a 3G mast were “chronic invisible stressors that have the same adverse effects on the body as being continuously exposed to loud noise.” She claimed that existing guidelines did not take this into account.” She added: “We really don't know what the impact of this radiation is going to be or what it is going to be like after 10-20 years of regular use.”
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