Voters say 'no' to mast

Chesterfield Today

People power looks set to cut off plans for a controversial mobile mast near homes in a mid-Derbyshire village.

Orange has planning permission from NE Derbyshire District Council to site a mast only 300 metres from a school in Wessington at Nethergreen Farm, Moorwood Moor Lane .

But after protests from villagers the landowners – four members of the Eason family – decided to put the matter to a public vote.

Fifty locals turned up at the Three Horseshoes Pub for a referendum on whether the mast should go ahead – and landlord Scott Brown said the answer was a resounding 'no'.

Mr Brown said: "The Easoms have been very good about this. They have said they will consider the views of the villagers.

"But they can't get back to us this week as they are silaging and cannot stop. We understand that, they have a business to run. We hope to hold a meeting with them very soon."

Last month Mr Brown vowed to leave the village if the 17m mast, with six antennae and four microwave dishes, was erected. He and other villagers were worried that the radiowaves were a health risk to the children.

Villagers were asked to vote whether to support the original plan, to choose from sites 400, 500 or 700 metres away from the school and village green or to decide not to have a mast at all. The villagers voted to do without a mast altogether.

Orange has planning permission from NEDDC to site the mast in the original position.

They and the landowners came up with a second possible site for the mast, the 400 metres option, but this has also been turned down by the villagers.

A spokeswoman for Orange said the mast conformed to strict government guidelines and no link between masts and ill-health had been established.


02 June 2005


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