Masts row goes to the Prime Minister

an angry resident furious at plans for a mobile phone mast near his Belper home has written a letter of complaint to the Prime Minister.

Tony Vardy felt compelled to write to David Cameron after attending a meeting of Amber Valley Borough Council’s planning board last month.

The meeting saw a mast for John O’Gaunts Way get the go-ahead, subject to highways officers from Derbyshire County Council deciding whether the mast equipment would be a hazard to drivers.

Now Mr Vardy is anxiously awaiting a reply to his letter from the PM.

He said: “My wife said I shouldn’t expect a response. But why shouldn’t I get one?

“Do they just get elected and then forget about us?

“One of the things about his ‘Big Society’ idea is that the public should have more say in planning matters.

“Why don’t they put into practice what they preach?”

Mr Vardy also wrote to Belper’s Tory MP Pauline Latham. He said: “I clearly stated as a heading the telecommunications mast and where it was — on John O’Gaunts Way.

“Then I referred to that in the letter and pointed out there had been a planning meeting on the matter.

“I got a reply from her saying, ‘thank you for your letter regarding the telecommunications mast on Marsh Lane’!”

However, Mr Vardy has now received another letter from the MP, explaining that his correspondence was accidentally placed in a pile of letters about the mast on Far Laund.

Mrs Latham said that she shared his concerns about a mast on John O’Gaunts Way, but local planning decisions were not under her jurisdiction.

Mr Vardy was among many residents left fuming after the planning meeting, who felt their concerns had gone unheard.