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Firm withdraws phone mast plans
United Kingdom Created: 7 Apr 2017
PEOPLE from Bradford on Avon who have been protesting against plans for a telephone mast in the town are celebrating after the application was withdrawn.

People living in Bath Road and Masons Lane were overjoyed to learn Galliford Try, the company which aimed to build a mast at the top of Masons Lane next to the BT hub, had withdrawn the plans, but the firm said this week it will be back with a new plan later this year.

Locals believe the mast would cause a health hazard as well as ruin the conservation area.

Gisela Norman, of Winsley Road, said: “This is a tremendous victory. Apparently the application was the most contentious one the council has had. It received a lot of opposition from the town. The next step is to look to the future and ensure that we check for any application notices that may be posted around the town and see if there will be another development elsewhere in Bradford. People were concerned of the health risks and the fact the mast was being built near a school.

“We had a celebration at The Castle Inn, which is directly opposite where the mast would’ve been built. Everyone was really happy with all of the hard work that had been put in to try and stop this development.”

In the space of a month and a half the campaigning residents gathered more than 1,000 signatures on their petition, a tenth of the town’s population, and collected a further 100 letters of objection as well as winning support from the town council and MP Michelle Donelan.

“We had such great support with 1,086 signatures and all of the letters of objection. Everyone did a fantastic job and really pulled together as a community to say that they didn’t want this development, especially in the position it was planned for. I think we really just want to say a massive thank you to everyone who helped, everyone who signed the petition and everyone who put up signs,” added Mrs Norman.

“One thing that everyone noticed, included the councillors, was that Galliford Try didn’t respond to any letters sent to them. The group of about 60 people really did make an impact on this application and it really just goes to show how the town can be brought together.”

A spokesman for Galliford Try said: "We submitted a proposal for a mobile phone base station at the BT telephone exchange. However, due to changes in the tree line local to the site and comments from local residents, we have decided to withdraw the present planning application, redesign the site to take account of the comments received and then submit a new planning application. Vodafone and O2 have identified that they need to improve the coverage in the Bradford upon Avon area."
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Source: Wiltshire Times, Patrick McLean, 07 Apr 2017

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