If you dont act soon it will happen overnight (yes, literally
overnight - these masts are often erected overnight to avoid people trying
to stop their construction). The whole process of erection of mobile phone
masts is a very rapid process - from a "notification of intent" message
in the newspaper to the construction and operation of the mast can be only
a matter of weeks. The planning service must provide a decision within 21-42
days (depending on the mast location - free standing or attached to an existing
Recently small proportion of the cavehill Tennis and Bowling club shareholders
were involved in a vote to determine if they should proceed with a planning
application for a Mobile Mast with Hutchinson 3G. These allegedly
"hand-picked" shareholders voted in favour of installing the mast by
a margin of 36 to 4 (note that there are alot more than 40
shareholders in the club). It's obvious to most people in the area that the
vast majority of people oppose this application and I'm sure this would also
apply to the club members many of which were not even informed let alone
given a say in the matter.
There are many reasons why club members and local residents would wish
to resist this development
Main Grounds for appeal appear to the planning authorities appear to be
Focus on the Applicant and The Planning Service.
- Loss of Visual Amenity
- Stress caused by anxiety/worry over potential health hazard.
- Loss of a peaceful enjoyment of your property...This may have something
to do with certain Human Rights legislation.
- Stewart Report recommends a "precautionary approach to the use of Mobile
Phone technology until much more detailed and scientifically robust
- information on any health effects become available"
However its often the case that these planning applications are approved
and the best plan of attack for those concerned is to put pressure on the
club to withdraw their application
This tactic has already been sucessful with a mast application for the Lansdowne
Hotel. In this case the application was withdrawn when the applicant was made
aware of the strenght of local feeling.
We have already spoken to local estate agents who have confirmed our concerns
that such a mast will have a detrimental effect on house prices. There is
already a precedent for this - a buyer withdrew from a pending sale on Parkmount
road when they heard that a mast was to be erected in land adjacent to the
house. The vendor then had to drop the house price to get a sale.
Will anyone want to buy our house ?
What if the antanae plan is approved but at some later date research proves
such installations hazardous but allowable. Surrounding properties would become
un-marketable either because of people’s fears or because mortgages would
not be given due to the danger, e.g. as is the case with overhead electricity
Biological effects that result from heating of tissue by RF energy are often
referred to as "thermal" effects. The current safety standards only limit
transmitted power to levels below that which would cause heating. These standards
only came into effect 50 years after the problem first became apparent – 2nd
World War RADAR crews suffered cataracts and tumours. At relatively low levels
of exposure to RF radiation, i.e., field intensities lower than those that
would produce significant and measurable heating, the possibility of "non-thermal"
biological effects exists. Whether or not such effects might indicate a human
health hazard is not presently known. Further research is ongoing, in the
meantime, standards-setting organizations and government agencies continue
to monitor the latest experimental findings to confirm their validity and
determine whether alterations in safety limits are needed in order to protect
Planning authorities should be guided by the fact that European Union Treaties
advocated the Precautionary Principle (1993 Maastricht) to safeguard the public's
health. Governments are not there to be led by the Industry in pursuit of
progress and financial gain at the expense of the public at large. Governments
are there to be able to interpret properly scientific guidance or advice.
In this country mobile phone masts have now been banned from school sites.
The Education Secretary (UK) has told schools to limit mobile phone use by
children (up to 16 years old) and to make sure that mobile phone masts nearby
do not send a "beam of greatest intensity" across their land. Children live
in the houses around the church, spending many more hours here than at school
and therefore need more protection.
This proliferation of Network Masts may turn out to be the next BSE
for ignoring the warnings and acting without any common sense or prudent avoidance.
What does prudent avoidance, preventative action, precautionary approach
mean in practice? No-one wants to prevent the advance of telecommunications.
However, common sense needs to prevail over the economics of the Industry’s
proliferation. There is no need these days to place Telecommunications Masts
and Base Stations too close to permanently occupied residences and children’s
schools. The only reason that Masts are placed too close is because it is
There is insufficient scientific evidence to determine conclusively whether
the radiation from these base stations could be harmful or not to human health…Given
the uncertainty surrounding the issue I believe that the subsequent worry
and stress caused by the siting of a mast near our homes not only affects
our “peaceful enjoyment” of our possessions (Article 1 of Protocol 1 of the
Human Rights Act) but in itself could be detrimental to our health
We are sure the installation would meet current health regulations – our
concern is that it is not yet proved that these regulations are adequate.
Already other countries are starting to introduce more stringent regulations.
Is Belfast City Council prepared to face future recriminations for their failure
to safeguard the public's health.
We would urge anyone to read the The Stewart Report that can be found at
There is a summary at http://www.iegmp.org.uk/IEGMPsum.htm
There are umpteen other reports.... if you search on an internet search
There as a very useful reference site
which gives plenty of advice on how to object to this application.