GETTING TOUGH - TELECOMS MASTS HAVE TO GO

August 2, 2011 8:04 AM

Everyone is getting sick and tired of the games being played by the telecoms companies over the mobile phone masts in our area. When Your Homes Newcastle (YHN) approached your local Fawden councillors about the future of Fawdon Park House, we asked for it to be demolished rather than refurbished because local people have long regarded it as an eyesore. YHN agreed, moved out the tenants and then started talking to the phone companies about relocating their masts. This has been a long drawn-out process.

YHN has now written formally to the Chief Executives of Orange, T-Mobile and Vodafone demanding urgent action to remove the masts so demolition can take place. It has been agreed that T-Mobile andOrangecan move their masts to Ewart Courtwhilst Vodafone will use a ground-based mast elsewhere. "There's no excuse for this to drag on" says Councillor David Faulkner. "The block is deteriorating and it's costing a lot of money for security as thieves target scrap material."

Meanwhile, the operators have also been dragging their feet in Red House Farm. Last year contractors for Vodafone began installing a mast on Kingston Park Road without having formal approval. Eventually they (and O2) were given approval for a new mast at Kingston Park roundabout but have taken months to remove the equipment on Kingston Park Road. The saga doesn't reflect well on the council or the operators.