Mast plan: 'A risk to health of pupils'

Apr 10 2006

Paul Maunder, South Wales Echo

A MOBILE phone giant's plan to build a 38ft mast just yards away from Wales' biggest school has sparked a protest among local residents.

Residents have begun collecting a petition in a bid to stop T-Mobile building a mast next to Tesco Extra in Manor Way, Whitchurch, Cardiff, which also borders Rhiwbina.

The site lies just yards away from Whitchurch High (Lower) School's playing fields, on the opposite side of Manor Way.

Retired physiotherapist Maureen Hedley-Clarke, who lives with husband Peter, 72, in Manor Way, a few doors away from the planned mast, said: "I'm absolutely appalled.

"I'm not only concerned about the risks to my health but to the hundreds of children who pass by here every day.

"There are a lot of unknown cancers around and we're not aware of how young people are getting these cancers.

"There has not been enough long term study into the risks that these masts pose.

"It will also be a terrible eyesore."

Elias Carou, 64, from Lon-y-Parc, Rhiwbina, said: "My two granddaughters will attend Whitchurch High in the future, and I'm worried about the health risks of this mast.

"It can only be 50 yards or so away from the playing fields."

Matthew Dawes, 23, of Heol-y-Nant, Rhiwbina, said: "The mast will not only be an eyesore but also a health risk near to one of the biggest schools in Britain.

"We've already got three masts in this area, and no one has been having problems with their reception."

Coun Jayne Cowan, local ward member for Rhiwbina, said: "Manor Way is one of the busiest roads in Cardiff and T-Mobile want to stick this monstrosity there.

"We don't think any more masts should be put around here because of the potential health risks, and this particular mast will be put up exceptionally close to the school.

"We believe phone companies like T-Mobile should be sharing existing masts as much as possible."

A T-Mobile spokeswoman said: "We appreciate that residents do have health and safety concerns but we do adhere to the strict guidelines of the World Health Organisation.

Omega read "Base Stations, operating within strict national and international Guidelines, do not present a Health Risk?" under:

"We are satisfied that there are no health risks to local residents or children.

Omega this is not true. See under:

"Wherever possible we do try to mast share.

"However, we also need to advance and improve the current T-Mobile network."

Cardiff council confirmed it has not yet received a planning application from T-Mobile.

Members of the public will have the chance to have their say on the mast at a meeting at the Mason's Arms Public House in Tyn-y-Parc Road, Rhiwbina, between 7.30pm and 9pm tomorrow.

© owned by or licensed to Trinity Mirror Plc 2006


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