Bournemouth Council Cares?


As some here already know, I subcontract for Bournemouth Borough Council. Over the past year I have gifted extensively around the area, and around 7months ago began giving away and selling HHg’s (at cost) to employees. There are now over 100HHg’s owned by employees of the borough, plus I guess about 1500 tb’s HHgs etc around the area in general.

Today in the office, a friend emailed out a link to saying that was how to find mobile masts near you. I emailed back and said I used that site quite alot to find towers around and that all the ones in bournemouth are gifted Smile

Anyway it wasn’t until I finished work that I went to the local shop, to get some bits for pancakes, that I noticed the front page of the Daily Echo (bournemouths daily that until tonight I’d never bought).


by Lynn Jackson

TODAY the Daily Echo reveals the location of nearly 130 mobile phone masts which campaigners fear could be putting health at risk.

The information – published by Bournemouth council after pressure from protesters – also contains details of up to 40 new masts which could appear in the town in the next year alone.

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Residents fighting masts in Moordown and Southbourne say they have spent weeks asking planners at Bournemouth council for copies of the mobile phone mast “roll-out plan”.

Now the planning department has made the list available on the council’s website.

The plan gives the location of all working masts in the borough, together with details of proposed sites and masts that have received planning permission but have not yet been built.

Many masts have been put up in residential areas.

Janet Bentley from Moordown Residents Association said: "We feel that if it wasn’t for the pressure we put on the council, they would never have released this roll-out plan to the public.

“Bournemouth residents should have the opportunity to look at this list to find out where the sites are and stop the secrecy that seems to surround mobile phone mast applications.”

But Bournemouth council’s head of planning and transport, Mike Holmes, said the council was happy to share information where possible.

“We’ve published this mobile phone roll-out plan as soon as we could,” he said. "Previous rollout plans were in parts, not site-specific – for example they might have stated Wimborne Road but not included an exact location on Wimborne Road – and we didn’t want to create any uncertainty unnecessarily.

“Sites identified in this plan are generally more specific, so that people gain a full understanding of the actual position of the mast.”

All five mobile operators – T-Mobile, 3, Vodafone, Orange and O2 – have masts scattered across the town.

Many are in residential areas, built next to petrol stations, on pubs, shops, churches and schools along with bingo halls, building societies and even McDonald’s outlets.

And there could be many more planned for the town, said Bournemouth East MP Tobias Ellwood who has been in talks with both Vodafone and Hutchison 3G.

He said: "Vodafone has another eight masts to put up in Bournemouth and I understand Hutchison 3G has a similar number.

"The other three operators are behind in their rollout of the third generation systems, meaning Bournemouth can expect another 40 mobile phone mast applications in the next year.

“This is a staggering number.”

Mr Ellwood is one of the local MPs who will be backing a bid tomorrow to change the law and give local councils greater powers to reject mobile phone masts.

Mid Dorset and North Poole MP Annette Brooke will join him in Parliament for the second reading of a private member’s bill which would force phone operators to get planning permission for masts and remove “permitted development” rights for smaller installations.

On Tuesday February 28, Bournemouth councillors unanimously voted to support the bill, welcoming the proposed powers to prohibit any development without planning permission.

The new law would also allow councils to take health issues into account when making decisions on masts.

Applications to site mobile phone masts in residential areas have sparked much controversy in Bournemouth over the past few weeks. Many residents in Moordown were angry after a Hutchison 3G mast was erected without warning at the Holly Tree pub on Wimborne Road.

And campaigners from Southbourne were furious when a legal blunder by Bournemouth council allowed Vodafone to put up a mast, despite it being rejected by planners.

Many protesters fear potential health risks from the radiation emitted by mobile masts, especially when they are sited near homes, schools and hospitals.

Campaigner Louise Sheppard from the Moordown Residents Association said: "Some people ask us how we can object to masts when so many of us now use mobile phones.

"But if someone was trying to put a motorway through my garden, I wouldn’t be criticised for using a car.

“It’s all about siting these masts in more sensible locations away from residential areas.”

There are now around 60 million mobile phone users in the UK, and services such as email, picture messaging and video phones are becoming increasingly popular.

The new third generation (3G) mobile networks are designed to speed up these types of multimedia communications.

In 2000, five phone operators were granted 3G licences: Orange, Vodafone, 3, O2 and T-Mobile.

All have an obligation under their licences to provide 3G services to at least 80 per cent of the population by the end of next year.

But the 3G networks have smaller cell sizes than the earlier technologies, and need masts spaced at distances of as little as 1000 metres.

The 3G cells also expand and contract depending on how many people are making calls at any one time, so more overlap is necessary.

This means more masts are needed to maintain coverage for mobile phone users – and that in turn means more masts being sited in residential areas.

In 2004, a report from government scientists dismissed suggestions about the safety of mobile phone base stations, of which there are around 30,000. It said radiation exposure was extremely low and unlikely to pose a health risk.

For full listing of mobile phone mast sites by postcode, see today’s Daily Echo

For more details on masts nearby click here

First published: March 2, 2006


The paper artcile itself also has a complete list of every mast by postcode and locational discription. Plus pictures of a recent protest and a fake tree mast.

Might seem bogus lip service to others here, sorry if so, but it feels like a really good confirmation to me anyway.