Friday, 19 February 2010

02 Phone Mast in Darras Hall

Residents locally in Ponteland are rightly very angry that 02 are proposing to put a mast up directly outside the Darras Hall First School. Leave aside health concerns for the moment; any person would be upset when the application was rejected but the Council fails to lodge its rejection in time, thereby giving 02 permission by default.
There is a crunch meeting next week with protesters when 02 have to decide how they want to play this: they are trying to wheel out their big PR guns to persuade the community. But if a community says it does not want a phone mast outside a school, but will accept it in a field a short distance away - should they not listen to their local customers?
As a lawyer I have represented many action groups in the past and have been to this group's meetings: this action group are well organised, highly motivated, eloquent and up for the fray. 02 would be well advised not to take this particular group of protesters on, when there are reasonable alternatives for them to pursue. They have no moral right to this planning and they know it:
A good piece today in the Journal on this issue, and coverage building in Morpeth Herald and other media.