21
Sep
2005

A victory for people power

Redditch Advertiser

RESIDENTS were celebrating this week after a controversial planning application for a 22.5m phone mast near a Matchborough school was thrown out by councillors.

At a planning meeting last Tuesday, councillors backed their officers' recommendations to refuse the plan at Neon House, Bartleet Road, Washford, because they said it would have a detrimental affect on the surrounding area.

Neighbours had organised a petition against the mast on health grounds, and because the plan would involve the felling of protected trees.

They also objected to it being erected near to an existing 20m high mast.

Phil Henshaw of Frankton Close said: "We're very pleased the plans were refused."

He said he spoke at the meeting praising the town's beauty and appealing to councillors to call a halt to the proliferation of masts in the area.

Councillor Juliet Brunner said she was delighted at the decision to refuse the proposal.

Forbidden from speaking directly to the committee, she submitted her objection letter alongside one from Arrow Vale headteacher Peter Woodman and numerous others, including a petition of 83 local residents

Speaking afterwards she said: "This decision is a tribute to people power - the local community united to make their views known."

Mrs Brunner added: "There are enough phone masts in the area. It is time now for these phone companies to look seriously at finding alternatives."

She said thanks should go to Phil Henshaw who worked tirelessly to ensure the views of his neighbours were taken into consideration.
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