Dad’s desperate plea to mobile phone company

By Linda Piper

Protesters Susan Charge, Jennifer Boswell and Father Raymond from a neighbouring priory are all opposed to the mast BE4556-05

A DESPERATE father is fighting a last-ditch battle to stop a phone mast so he can bring his disabled son home.

Danch Boswell, 69, of Carlton Road, Northumberland Heath, has been battling for three years to bring home his son Levi, 34, who was paralysed after two catastrophic stem cell strokes in June 2003.

Levi, who is married with two children aged eight and four, relies on a range of hi-tec machinery, including a ventilator, to keep him alive. He can only communicate by blinking his eyes.

As his parents were making the necessary alterations to their home, they were told by doctors mobile phones could not be used in the house because of the potential effect on the medical equipment. continued...

So Mr Boswell was horrified to discover that a mobile phone mast, which he thought had been refused permission, is about to be put up just yards from his home.

T-Mobile was refused planning permission by Bexley Council in July last year to site a 10m-high mast on the footpath at the junction of Carlton Road and Erith Road.

But last month a planning inspector overturned Bexley's decision and has told the company it can go ahead and put up the mast.

Mr Boswell has appealed to T-Mobile to find somewhere else for its mast, but although they promised to talk to him, he has still not heard anything back from the company.

His son went into King's College Hospital in Denmark Hill, in June 2003 to have a growth removed from his brain. The operation was a success but Levi, one of twins, suffered a double stroke soon afterwards.

Mr Boswell said the family feared he would die. He started to lose his sight, and with the help of the NHS, the family flew Levi to a German clinic, where his sight was saved.

When his family flew him back to England, Levi spent time at St Thomas' Hospital in central London and at a care home in Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire, to prepare him to go home.

In the meantime the family started make preparations for his return. His wife and children live in Belvedere, but their home was too small to accommodate Levi, all his equipment and specialist nurses.

So Mr Boswell and his wife Jennifer paid for extensive alterations to their own bungalow so Levi could live with his family again. Bexley Care Trust is providing specialist nursing.

Everything was in place for Levi's return in the next few weeks, when Mr Boswell discovered that the mast is to go ahead.

He told News Shopper: "I am shattered. We don't need this on our doorstep. We cannot risk this mast outside our home.

"We have fought for three years to bring Levi home. If I don't fight for my son, who will?"

All attempts by News Shopper to contact T-Mobile were unsuccessful.

10:00am today

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