Residents rejoice at mast plan

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People power has prevailed in blocking plans for a phone mast just 150 yards from a Leyland school.

Telecommunications giants O2 and Vodaphone applied for permission to build an 11m high pole on land off School Lane in Moss Side - a short distance from St James’s C of E Primary School.

But the plans were withdrawn at the 11th hour - sparking joyous scenes from campaigning residents who signed a petition of more than 100 people against the plans.

Margaret Hillier, who lives on Old School Lane, has two grandsons who attend the primary school and was concerned about what the plans would mean for their long-term health.

She said: “It is a great relief for us. We were so worried and my daughter was looking at moving house and everything because she was so fearful.

“When we found out about it we did a walk around the neighbourhood to tell people and no one knew anything. They were so shocked.

“It is just the best news ever and it goes to show what people power can do. We are amazed and have all said our prayers.”

There is already a mast erected by phone operator Orange a few feet from the proposed site, on a grass verge off School Lane.

The new mast would have been roughly the height of two houses and would have had an adjoining box, three times bigger than the one for the current mast.

Kevin Chadwick, 73, who lives on Long Moss, would have overlooked the mast if plans were passed, and says residents should be cautious in case the phone giants come back with new plans.

He said: “I am delighted. Of course they could come back with something but if they do we will be ready and we will start shouting again.

“They may look for somewhere else to put it but I’m sure there will be objections wherever they decide to put it.

“I’m really pleased it has been withdrawn, and it just goes to show what a community can do.”

02 and Vodaphone were unavailable for comment.