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Plans for mobile mast are shelved

MOBILE phone giant O2 have shelved plans to erect a mast at the Richmond House Hotel after a meeting with 100 anxious residents.

MOBILE phone giant O2 have shelved plans to erect a mast at the Richmond House Hotel after a meeting with 100 anxious residents.

Neighbours of the site in Richmond Road, gathered at St Margaret's School last week for a meeting chaired by Solihull Lib Dem MP Lorely Burt.

Mrs Burt welcomed the news and said on Wednesday: "O2 have informed me of their decision not to proceed with the proposed plan to site the mast at Richmond House Hotel.

"They were unaware that this site was to be redeveloped for residential housing, so as it is their policy not to site masts on top of people's homes they are not proceeding."

She said she would try and make sure 02 erect the mast away from homes.

Relieved resident Tracey Hurst lives on Richmond Road next to the hotel. She said she was only made aware of O2's mast proposal three days before the meeting.

"I did some research on the internet and knew there would be some risks involved with putting a mast up so close to residential homes."

Tracey, who has a 14-week-old baby was concerned for the health and wellbeing of youngsters living so close to the masts. "We were worried about possibly cancer clusters caused by radiation.

"Young kids don't use mobile phones so it's not fair they suffer any consequences."

Tracey said neighbours were also worried about the effects a mast would have on house prices in an already dwindling housing market.

After the meeting residents remained unconvinced a mast was necessary.

Tracey said: "We were told at the meeting that the masts are needed for the growing 3G technology. But my neighbours and I have never had any problems with network connection."

"I think there needs to be an investigation into whether there is a 'gaping hole' that needs to be filled by extra masts, which is what we were told."

An 02 spokesman said: "We understand there is planning consent on Richmond House Hotel for houses. We can't put a flag pole on the side of private property."

But she said 02 are still looking to place a mast in the vicinity to "complete 3G requirements in the area" and the company was considering suggestions made by residents for a possible location.

 

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