Anger at proposed phone mast near school

PARENTS have reacted angrily to plans to put up a mobile phone mast on farmland close to a primary school.A number of parents whose children attend Clare Primary School in Clare, near Sudbury have joined forces to fight the plan, because they fear the mast could be a health hazard.

PARENTS have reacted angrily to plans to put up a mobile phone mast on farmland close to a primary school.

A number of parents whose children attend Clare Primary School in Clare, near Sudbury have joined forces to fight the plan, because they fear the mast could be a health hazard.

Mobile phone company Orange has applied to St Edmundsbury Borough Council to put up the towering mast at Church Farm, which is close to the school boundary.

Several parents have been putting leaflets up around the town, which are opposed to the scheme. They are also lobbying parish councillors in an attempt to gain support in their battle to stop the mast being built.


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Clare resident Carl Walker, whose children Chloe, 8, and Daniel, 7, both attend the school, is leading the fight on behalf of the concerned parents.

He said: “We find it incredible that Orange have applied to site the mast so close to a primary school and residential property. Clare is a small market town surrounded by arable land, surely there must be more sensible places to locate the mast away from the school.

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“I have two children at the school and like many other parents I am deeply concerned for their health. As well as my concern for my children and neighbours' children I am also concerned for the future of the school. I certainly would not send my child to a school in the shadow of a mobile phone mast.

“We will fight these plans all the way and we will urge the parish council to back us. Surely, common sense must prevail in this case.”

Orange have offered owner of Church Farm Michael Jacobs £5,000 for each disc on the mast if the plan is given the go ahead.

He said: “The planning application is all down to Orange and nothing to do with me. The company approached me and asked me if it could use my land and I said yes.

“The company has offered me £5,000 for every disc it puts up, and I think there will be two. I have been assured the mast poses no danger to health, but if someone proved to me there was a danger I would want it here either.”

A spokesman for CR Barnes, agent for Orange, said: The mast will be a 15metre monopole in the corner of a field 250 yards away from the school boundary. It will be surrounded by indigenous landscaping.”

St Edmundsbury's planning committee will consider the matter in February.

The school's headteacher John Pauling declined to comment on the matter.

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