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Lancashire:
United Kingdom Created: 10 Jul 2005
Oldham: Manchester:
Vodaphone and 02 mast sharing
Phone-mast protest

FEARFUL residents are mounting a campaign against plans for a large phone mast close to their homes in Shaw.
They are alarmed at Vodafone’s application to replace an existing mast with a 21m-high (68.89ft) lattice-type structure at W Felton Ltd on the Trent Industrial Estate, off Duchess Street.
Wren’s Nest Residents’ Association has now launched a petition urging decision-makers at Oldham Council to refuse permission.
Campaign co-ordinator Andy Sutherland said: “This mast would tower above anything else in the local area and be a blot on the landscape.
“We are very angry and worried about the dangers, whether it is perceived or real, and this has already caused a considerable amount of anxiety and stress.”
The three main concerns of residents are the visual and environmental impact, interference with household electrical equipment and dangers to health.
They say the mast would be 6m (6.56yd) taller than the original mast, only 20m (21.87yd) from the nearest homes and would be an unsightly structure with 12 antennas and one microwave dish protruding.
It is even claimed that house prices could plummet by 20 to 30 per cent.
The protesters also state that gaps in knowledge about the potential health impacts of exposure to radiation warrant a precautionary app-roach to the siting of masts.
They say children are particularly vulnerable and warn that Rushcroft Primary School and Dunwood Park are only about 50m (54.68yd) from the proposed site.
An application for a smaller mast in the vicinity was turned down only two years ago, opponents point out.
The parish-council’s planning committee has recommended the scheme for approval and that it is used for mast sharing with other mobile-phone companies.
Vodafone said it had received a request from another operator, O2, to share the site.
This meant the height of the structure had to be increased from 15m (16.4yd) to 21m (22.96yd) to accommodate all the antennas without interference.
Oldham Evening Chronicle
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Warrington:
We'll fight to get rid of phone mast
RESIDENTS who say they weren't told of plans to erect a phone mast say they will try their best to get it taken down.
The first thing that residents knew about a Vodaphone mast on Dewhurst Road in Birchwood, was when workers arrived this week to erect it.
Now mum-of-four Tracy Valentine, who lives in nearby Whitworth Close, says with the help of other residents, she is too start up a petition against the mast.
She believes the residents should have been consulted about the proposals which were passed by Warrington Borough Council as a 'deemed application', which are new planning laws, in January this year.
She said: "No residents have been informed about this.
"The first we knew of it was when the workers arrived to put it up.
"We all though that they were speed cameras at first.
"It just seems so underhand in how it is done. I would urge anyone who lives nearby to come and sign the petition."
The petition will be in the Oakwood Neighbourhood Centre if anyone wishes to sign.
Warrington Guardian

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Orford Green
THE war of words over a proposal to erect a mobile phone mast on a church tower in Orford Green is finally over after the church council decided to abandon the plans.
After months of heated debate between parishioners of St Margaret and All Hallows Church, residents and ward councillors, the church council agreed to scrap the plans, despite them being approved by the borough council's development control committee.
The community's argument centred upon the safety issues surrounding mobile phone masts in residential areas while the church stood to gain financially from the deal with T Mobile.
But last week, following a meeting with the church council, St Margaret's decided not to proceed with the controversial mast.
Now residents say they are keen to build bridges with the church and particularly the Reverend John Reed, vicar of St Margaret's.
Yoko Warburton, one of the residents who opposed the mast, said: "I feel that our message at last reached the church and the very people who make the decisions.
"I don't feel we 'won' because I don't want to think of it as some kind of battle between the church and residents.
"It was more a matter of getting them to change their viewpoint over ways of raising the church maintenance fund.
"Risking residents' health was definitely not the way forward.
"The way the church handled the issue from start to finish was all wrong and completely inappropriate.
"Nothing was said to the residents in the first place, hardly anyone was aware of what was going on and we weren't publicly notified but we should now move on from this and start working together."
Mike Hannon, ward and borough councillor, who opposed the proposal, said: "I am pleased that the church council has listened to the concerns of the community and taken a decision that will benefit the community at large."
The church declined to comment on the matter.
Warrington News 31st May 2005
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Hoghton.
Phone mast objectors to speak out

Residents against the siting of a 3G mobile phone mast near their homes plan to voice their opposition to phone company T-Mobile on Thursday.
The company hopes to build a 15m mast on farmland near a school and housing estate in Hoghton, Lancashire.
A representative from T-Mobile will be available to meet residents in a drop-in session one-to-one from 1600 to 1900 BST at Coupe Green Primary School.
But opponents believe the company should have a public meeting.
Campaigner Chris Nelson said residents were concerned about the siting of the masts near a housing estate and Coupe Green school.

'Time waster'
"Other groups have told us that these one-to-one meetings are a waste of time," he said.
"We are expecting more than 150 people going along and not everybody will get a chance to have their say," he said.
An email sent to Mr Nelson from the company said the drop-in sessions followed a code of conduct agreed with the government.
"In our experience we find that members of the community prefer the one-to-one type of meeting to address their own issues at a time which
suits them, rather than the public meeting which often becomes confrontational and counter productive," said John Carwardine, Community Affairs Manager with T-Mobile (UK).

A T-Mobile spokesman told the BBC: "Based on over 40 years of research, T-Mobile is confident that its base stations, operating within strict national and international guidelines (recognised by the World Health Organisation), do not present a health risk to any member of the public."
BBC News Online

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Hoghton:

Mast protesters seek bats' probe

Groundless health fears for campaigners seeking bats?
Objectors to a proposed mobile phone mast have joined conservationists to investigate whether the plans threaten a colony of bats
More than 150 residents of Hoghton, Lancashire, plan to oppose the 15m (49ft) mast proposed by T-Mobile.
Residents say a meeting with the firm did not allay their concerns about siting the mast on farmland near a school and homes.
A firm said health concerns over mobile phone masts were groundless.

'Health risks'
Resident Mr Chris Nelson said locals would be contacting the Bat Conservation Trust to investigate what effect the mast could have on the bats.
Mr Nelson said residents had concerns about the health risks from the masts.
"The government recommends that local authorities do not take health effects into consideration, however, many local authorities are rejecting these recommendations including Kent County Council, which refuses to endorse consents on any council land, due to their concerns over health," he added.
T-Mobile met residents in a local school before lodging a planning application with South Ribble Council.
BBC News website 19th June 05

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Lancaster

No2 02 group make film to highlight health risks
Protestors fight phone mast plans
CAMPAIGNERS fighting plans to erect a mobile phone mast in Scale Hall this week handed more than 150 letters of objection to Lancaster City Council.
They will find out today, Friday, whether the council will move to prevent telecommunications giant O2 building the mast on land at the corner of West Drive and Scale Hall Lane.
The O2 application exploits a quirk in British planning law by asking for 'prior approval'.
To block the plan, the council must object on the grounds that the mast represents an unwarranted visual intrusion.
The council contacted nearby residents in May to invite their comments, setting a deadline of Wednesday, June 15.

Petition
Rosemary Wilkie of West Drive, who led the campaign, said she had been delighted by the community's response.
"We've sent 159 letters and talked to a lot of people who sent in letters off their own back.
I'm sure if we'd had more time we'd have got even more," she said.
A petition signed by more than 400 people has also been presented to the council.
"The petition adds weight to our argument," said Rosemary.
"But I think letters from individuals and addresses in the affected area will have more of an impact."
Rosemary said she and her neighbours, mostly virgin campaigners, were learning the ropes as they went along.
"From what we've gleaned, we have to fight this on the visual intrusion of the mast," she said.
"Any potential health issues are not taken into account."
This annoys Rosemary's husband Jim.
"The real health issue is the stress and anxiety which comes from not knowing whether these masts are safe," he said.
But fellow campaigner Ken Pyne of Morecambe Road is confident the visual intrusion will be adequate to kill the plan.
"There'll be a large equipment box, a large electrical box, not to mention the mast itself, which will be half again as big as an ordinary lamp-post,"
he said.
"No way can that be anything but obtrusive."
The campaigners are now hopeful the council will pay heed to their concerns, said Rosemary.
A planning spokesman said: "All the observations we have received will be taken into account in reaching a recommendation and decision."
r NotoO2 campaigners who successfully scuppered plans to build masts in Slyne Road have made a film highlighting the potential health risks of emissions from mobile phones.
They intend to distribute the film – which shows campaigners measuring pulsed microwave radiation in houses near mobile phone masts –
to councillors, MPs and the media.
Campaigner Adrian Hamilton said: "The idea behind the film is to convey the notion that these masts, especially those disguised as other things,
are not as innocuous as they look."
Lancaster Guardian. 16.06.05

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Darwen.
Labour councillors behaving badly and Residents lose mast battle

HUNDREDS of residents have lost their battle against a 20 metre-high mobile phone mast near their homes after the issue caused a rift between councillors.
Labour over-ruled opposition members of Blackburn with Darwen Council's planning committee to approve the mast at Welding Engineering Ltd, Spring Vale Road, Darwen.
A petition with 250 signatures from residents opposing the mast, to be used by O2, was presented to the committee.
In January, residents won a similar battle when O2 asked to build the mast at a site close by.
But last night Darwen Labour councillor Dave Smith told the committee: "This is the best site for the mast within this area.
"They have looked at other sites, but they aren't suitable.
"People complain about masts wherever they are put, but on the other hand they are using mobile phones like never before."
Residents argued that the proximity of the mast to their homes could pose a future health hazard, and it would be an eyesore.
Staff at the nearby Barnabas House nursery had also complained to the council on health grounds.
Resident Paul Singleton said: "This site is just over the road from the one refused. There have to be better sites locally."
Conservative Darwen councillor Fred Slater said: "There are much more suitable sites, like closer to Cranberry Moor where it would be higher.
"I'm not happy, and I feel for the residents."
The committee was told it would not be held liable under law for any subsequent health problems caused by mast, because government guidance currently stated there was no risk to people from being close to masts.
Tory councillor Alan Cottam said: "These new generations of masts don't cover such wide areas so they are going to keep popping up. The council should find sites suitable for masts, away from homes, and make all the companies share them."
Lancashire Evening Telegraph
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Nelson.

Phone mast fury GROWS and Phone mast objectors to speak out
Phone mast objectors to speak out
Residents against the siting of a 3G mobile phone mast near their homes plan to voice their opposition to phone company T-Mobile on Thursday.
The company hopes to build a 15m mast on farmland near a school and housing estate in Hoghton, Lancashire.
A representative from T-Mobile will be available to meet residents in a drop-in session one-to-one from 1600 to 1900 BST at Coupe Green Primary School.
But opponents believe the company should have a public meeting.
Campaigner Chris Nelson said residents were concerned about the siting of the masts near a housing estate and Coupe Green school.

'Time waster'
"Other groups have told us that these one-to-one meetings are a waste of time," he said.
"We are expecting more than 150 people going along and not everybody will get a chance to have their say," he said.
An email sent to Mr Nelson from the company said the drop-in sessions followed a code of conduct agreed with the government.
"In our experience we find that members of the community prefer the one-to-one type of meeting to address their own issues at a time which suits them, rather than the public meeting which often becomes confrontational and counter productive," said John Carwardine, Community Affairs Manager with T-Mobile (UK).
A T-Mobile spokesman told the BBC: "Based on over 40 years of research, T-Mobile is confident that its base stations, operating within strict national and international guidelines (recognised by the World Health Organisation), do not present a health risk to any member of the public."
BBC News Online

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Pendle

RESIDENTS have accused mobile phone companies of putting profit before health and trying to divide communities on the issue of phone masts.
Pendle Residents against Insensitive Siting of Masts (PRISM) vowed to fight proposals to erect a transmitter on Hibson Road, Nelson, during a public meeting at Nelson Town Hall on Tuesday.
Vodafone has applied for permission to site the unit at the El Tropicano club.
Deputy mayor of Pendle, Coun. George Adam, who chaired the meeting, said: "To apply for this mast to be sited right in the middle of a residential area and very close to local schools is outrageous. But we can stop it, and the fight starts here."
College science lecturer, Mr Gary Bird, who set up PRISM with chairman Colin Hornby, said the main reason for the new mast is to provide a service to users of "third generation technology" (3G).
Mr Bird said the government has given operators until 2007 to roll out 80 per cent of the 3G network, with penalties to be paid if the target is not met.
He said: "This technology is being forced upon us where there is little or no demand for it. Profit is being put before health for the sake of what are basically big boys' toys."
Mr Bird called on the people of Pendle to unite and stand up to big companies.
He said: "This sort of thing divides communities and puts people at odds with eachother. Companies propose a site in one ward, like Vodafone did with Walverden, then move onto the next when it is refused. If it goes ahead in another area then people living nearby will be unhappy with residents in the other wards who fought it off."
The plans, which have been recommended for approval by council planning officers, will be discussed by Pendle Council's Nelson Committee on Monday.
Members of PRISM will collect signatures on a petition outside the schools near the proposed site, and will present it to the committee that evening.
Miss Jackie Nike, who protested over another mast site in Barrowford, said: "I spoke to two headteachers about it. One didn't want to get involved, and the other was horrified but did nothing to stop it. I would urge mums and dads, aunties and uncles to go to schools, let them know you are worried and get them involved."
One local doctor said all humans are susceptible to electro-magnetic fields and pulsed microwave signals used by the units. He said: "They can act as a trigger for people with low immune systems. Children and pregnant women are particularly at risk, and it is ridiculous that companies can even think of putting masts near schools."
Councillors will decide on Monday whether to give the go ahead for the base station to be erected.
Vodafone would have the right to appeal if the committee votes against the officer's recommendation and refuses permission.
david.pollard@eastlancsnews.co.uk
Pendle Today. 03 June 2005

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Leigh.

Residents to fight phone masts plan
FURIOUS families are protesting at plans by T-Mobile to erect a mobile phone mast on their estate.
The company has posted its intentions to raise a 15m pole close to homes in Carisbrooke Road and Queensway, Higher Folds,
in a bid to test residents' reactions before applying to Wigan Council for planning permission.
But fearful residents intend to fight every step of the way to stop the scheme on health grounds..
Carisbrooke Road mum-of-three Jean Clayton is appealing to all residents to write letters of objection to both T Mobile and to Wigan Council
as soon as possible.
She said: "We already have a Vodafone mast in the vicinity near Stafford's Farm and we don't want another.
"There are two schools, Higher Folds CP and St Gabrielís, close by and lots of children play in the area.
"I rang T Mobile to voice my concerns and was told that the mast is low health risk and that there is no evidence that they cause cancer.
On that reasoning there is no evidence that they donít either.
There is no smoke without fire and at the end of the day it is the children we are thinking about.
"My children are growing up, Suzanne is 17, Leanne 14 and Steven nine, but there are lots of younger children here.
If the mast did go up I would be frightened to death of going to sleep with my bedroom window open because of radiation.
But we don't intend to let it happen.
"I urge everyone on the estate to join the protest and write to the company immediately and let them know they have a fight on their hands."
A T-Mobile spokesman said: "We are at the first stages of pre-consultation, gathering feedback and views from the local community.
The planning consideration is for a 15 metre monopole to provide 3G network coverage to our customers in this area.
"T-Mobile is committed to responsible network development and fully subscribes to the Governmentís Code of Best Practice on
Mobile Phone Network Development.
When considering a site we enter full consultation with all concerned parties, including local residents and schools before submitting any
planning permission.
"The use of mobile phones in the UK has grown at a phenomenal rate, with some 60 million now in use.
All communities have the potential to benefit from first class mobile communications whether they are used for business, social or
emergency purposes.
"Without a network of base stations, however, mobile phones simply do not work.
T-Mobile understands there sometimes can be concerns when locating base stations in communities.
"Base stations are low powered radio transmitters, and it is important to recognise that the radio frequency signal from them represents
just one source of Radio Frequency in everyday lives.
Other sources in the environment include paging devices and emergency services communication systems.
The radiowaves from nearby base stations are favourably comparable to exposure from distant masts and from TV and
FM radio and other transmitters.
"Based on over 40 years of research, T-Mobile is confident that its base stations do not present a health risk to any member of the public.
"It also recognises that one of the biggest challenges facing operators is minimising the impact it has on the environment.
When a new mast is needed, we try to reduce the impact on the local environment with sensitive siting, innovative designs and,
where appropriate, landscaping."
Leigh (Lancs) Journal

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