TWO telecoms giants whose application for a new mobile phone mast was turned down have vowed to appeal against the decision.

O2 and Vodafone submitted a controversial joint proposal for a 12-metre mast in Richmond Road, Chingford, in October.

Local residents launched a campaign against the proposal and 1,300 people signed a petition opposing the mast.

They feared radiation from the mast could harm children who attend St Mary's Catholic School in nearby Station Road.

The council's planning committee turned the application down last month, saying it was an "unacceptable addition" to street clutter in a conservation area.

Jim Stevenson, a spokesman for O2 and Vodafone, said: “We thought it was a pretty weak reason for a refusal.

“They have got to say it is because it is in a conservation area because there is no other reason they can use to turn it down.

"We will be appealing the decision in the next couple of weeks.”

An application for a 15-metre mast in Shernhall Street in Walthamstow was recently turned down following a campaign by local residents.

The committee said the location was inappropriate. An appeal by O2 and Vodafone has since been lodged.

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