OBJECTORS to a new mobile phone mast say their fight has been won after the plans were scrapped this week.

Phone company Telefónica O2 wanted to raise a 20m transmitter on a piece of derelict land in Lyme Regis Industrial Estate to improve network coverage in the area.

Anxious residents living near the site launched a campaign to stop the move claiming it would seriously put their health at risk and create an unsightly blot on the landscape.

They also had major concerns for the wellbeing of the hundreds of Woodroffe School pupils who use the footpath just metres from the proposed site.

But their anxiety has turned to joy this week as O2 withdrew its application to planning authority West Dorset District Council.

O2 community relations officer Angela Johnson said: “O2 and Vodafone are going to be sharing networks so all proposals have been put on hold while the networks consolidate. It is too early to say whether the application will be re-submitted.”

Uplyme Road residents Alan and Jackie Deane led the Fight the Mast campaign and collected more than 60 signatures on a petition. Mrs Deane said she was ‘ecstatic’ to hear the news.

“It is a huge relief for everybody,” she said. “Somebody, somewhere has seen sense. I would like to know why they proposed it in the first place in such an unsuitable place.

“We don’t want to stop progress but I wouldn’t have considered this as progress.”

Haye Lane resident Chris Bartlett said: “I’m just delighted – it’s more than we could have hoped for. I think it was just silly to even think of putting a mast there.”

West Dorset MP Oliver Letwin backed the worried residents and following a meeting with senior management at the district council, he said he felt ‘quite optimistic about the outcome’.

Mr Letwin said this week: “It sounded to me as though if they had proceeded with the application it was likely to be withdrawn.”

He said he was ‘delighted’ the plans had been pulled, adding: “It was not in the right place.”

Lyme Regis Town Council also gave its support to the campaign, recommending to the district council the plans were refused.

Planning committee chairman Spencer Hogg said: “I would like to know the reasons for withdrawing the application and to be assured it is not withdrawn for amendment. I would hope this is an end to it