Pre-schools within 300m of phone mast bid site

STRONG objections have been lodged against a proposed mobile phone mast less than 300 metres from seven Rustington nurseries, playchools and toddler groups.

Primary and secondary schools have to be consulted by mobile networks when masts are planned nearby, but it appears that none of the nurseries and other groups have been informed about the proposed site, at the junction of The Street and Woodlands Avenue.

Rustington Parish Council has highlighted the closeness of the pre-school facilities in a letter to Arun District Council, opposing the O2 mast.

Yesterday (Wednesday), Arun councillors were being recommended to object to the 15m tall structure, resembling a telegraph pole, on the grounds that it would be a "prominent and obtrusive feature".

Adrian Fielding, co-owner with his wife, Gemma, of the Early Bird Nursery School in Woodlands Avenue, which has 60 younger children on its books, said of the mast: "We don't want it there. It's completely the wrong place. If schools for older children are consulted about masts, then it should be the same for pre-schools, but we haven't been consulted."

And Sim Dendy, of Arun Community Church, which runs the Playcentre nursery in The Street, which takes 45 children, said the church was concerned about the proposed mast and would be finding out more information, with a view to writing to Arun.

In its objection, the parish council lists both pre-school facilities, along with Riverslea Nursery and Noah's Ark toddlers' group, both meeting in the parish church hall, The Street, and the Tiddlers, Mod Mums and Rascals groups, all based in the Methodist church hall in Claigmar Road.

The parish council also raised concerns that the mast would be close to a public seat and a café with outside seating, and the equipment cabinet for the mast could block drivers' views, making a highway hazard.

01 February 2007

All rights reserved © 2007 Johnston Press Digital Publishing.

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