Residents "not informed" about new mast plan

25 October 2006

A WARD councillor has vowed to fight plans to install a phone mast before an application reaches the council.

Belvedere councillor David Leaf was informed by Orange earlier this month that the company was intending to put up a 15-ft phone mast in Woolwich Road, Belvedere, to "maintain the levels of coverage provided by the existing site at Bedonwell School".

But the Conservative councillor said putting the mast close to the Splash Park and the children's playground in Woolwich Road would be a wrong move.

He said: "I'm not waiting for a formal application to be submitted to the council. I want to make residents aware of the plans now and will be gathering their views.

"Phone masts could be a danger to children's health. It's better to take precautions and place them in areas away from residential areas."

Mr Leaf is angry that Orange has only sent details to ward councillors and not informed those living near the proposed site of its plans.

He said: "I'm shocked that the company is keeping it from residents. It's going to be outside their homes and businesses so they have a right to know about plans as soon as possible."

Orange says it is looking for a new site for a base station in the area because the lease on a mast at Bedonwell School in Bedonwell Road will not be renewed when it expires later this year.

In September Orange shelved plans to erect a mast just 100 yards from the school and have since been looking for a new site.

The company says World Health Organisation studies show that there is no adverse link between mobile phone technology and public health.

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