A COMMUNITY has come together to stop a 45ft phone mast being installed near two primary schools, on Canvey.

Parents with pupils at the schools, local residents and politicians are trying to stop 02 and Vodafone putting up the mast, in the car park of the Silver Jubilee pub, in Hilton Road.

Peter May, a Canvey Independent Party councillor for Winter Gardens, has started a petition opposing the plans.

Mr May said: “Lots of parents and people are concerned about the potential health implications of this phone mast.

“Wintergardens and St Katherine’s Church of England primary schools are both within very close proximity of where the proposed mast might be.

“It seems really hypocritical to put a giant phone mast in the middle of a community which has just been given £1million by the lottery to make the area look better.

“We are going to base the petitions at the schools, so parents can have the chance to sign it. We hope to get as many signatures as possible.”

Carol Sales uses Winter Gardens Primary School site as a base for Castle Point Sports Club for the Disabled, which she runs with her husband Alan.

She said: “Lots of our members will be concerned about these plans for the phone mast, as it’s a residential area with homes and schools in very close proximity. I am pleased to hear the community want to fight it and we will be doing everything we can to help. I will be signing the petition.”

The Echo approached the pub and both primary schools for comment, but we were told no one was available. The phone mast plans are set to be submitted to Castle Point Council by the end of the month.

A spokesman for 02 said: “Vodafone and O2 have decided we will share network assets, which will reduce the overall number of new base station locations for both parties, reduce deployment costs and follow the guidance set out in planning legislation. “Our customers expect to be able to use their mobiles and devices where they live, work and travel. Base stations are low powered and only cover approximately half a mile radius. We have to put base stations close to our customers and have identified we need to improve our 3G coverage in Canvey.”