People power sees mast rejected

A UNITED community is celebrating today after an application for a mobile phone mast was rejected.Residents in Ellenbrook Green had spoken out strongly against the O2 mast since the application was submitted last month.

A UNITED community is celebrating today after an application for a mobile phone mast was rejected.

Residents in Ellenbrook Green had spoken out strongly against the O2 mast since the application was submitted last month.

With plans to erect the 12.5m mast outside the Belstead Arms pub, just metres from Gusford primary school, residents were concerned about both the health implications and visual aspects of the mast.

And with Ipswich council receiving more than 50 representations and two petitions with a total of 143 signatures, the application was recommend for refusal prior to yesterday's committee meeting.

Speaking at the meeting councillor John Le Grys said: "Nothing gets the blood up more than applications for telecommunications aerials.

"When people take the time and effort to write individually and raise a whole set of issues which focus in on the visual impact this mast will have, you have to take that into consideration.

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"The officer's view (to not approve decision) is very clear and I applaud them for coming to that view. I trust the committee will follow the officer's recommendations."

Mr Le Grys is standing down as councillor for Sprites ward and in today's election Dick Kirby will be standing as Labour candidate with Bob Hall, Conservative. Both men have openly expressed their opposition to the mast.

Dick Kirby, of Ramsey Close said: "I don't want it in my neighbourhood or near the Belstead Arms. It is a big issue down here and we really care about it."

Bob Hall who lives close to where the mast was proposed in Radcliffe Drive said: "The local people have shown how high feelings are in the area against the mast by sending in letters to the council.

"They have shown they don't want the mast because of the effect visually and also they are concerned about the health effects of this thing.

"It is there support and petitioning that brought this about."

Mr Hall supported one of the petitions in the area organised by Holcombe Road resident, Gareth Evans.

Mr Evans was delighted at the news today, hailing it a successful not only for residents in Chantry and Pinewood but in Ipswich as a whole.

He said: "It is excellent news and I am obviously delighted especially with having a baby.

"If they had got away with putting this one up here where will the next one be? This is good for the town and our area."

The application was rejected on the grounds that it would be visually intrusive and not in keeping with its surroundings thereby failing to comply with the Ipswich local plan.

Do you think mobile phone masts pose a health risk or not? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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