Letters

PUBLISHED: 08:09 27 January 2006 | UPDATED: 21:39 28 May 2010

Lionel Walden s a really fine school I REFER to your story My Son s Bullying Ordeal in last week s edition. Both my children have had the privilege of attending Lionel Walden School. My youngest daughter is in her final year. I believe Mr Barron, the h

Lionel Walden's a really fine school

I REFER to your story 'My Son's Bullying Ordeal' in last week's edition. Both my children have had the privilege of attending Lionel Walden School. My youngest daughter is in her final year.

I believe Mr Barron, the headteacher, to be an outstanding leader, who has not only ensured that my children reached their academic potential, but takes a personal interest in their social and moral development.

Over the years I have seen Lionel Walden grow in size from 120 pupils, when my eldest daughter began in playgroup, to more than 250 today. However, it has retained the essence of a village school, where staff know each child and parent by name.

Of course my children have had difficulties with peers, but I have always found the staff to be approachable and when warranted the headteacher has taken a personal interest, ensuring that I am kept fully informed.

In reply to Mrs Keil, Ofsted now give schools two to three days' notice before a visit and all parents had the opportunity to reply to a questionnaire, stating concerns, and the inspectors spoke to pupils personally. They awarded Lionel Walden the report it deserved.

I am grateful to the headteacher and staff who have given my children an excellent start to their education. I do hope they are not demoralised by this trial by media.

Ms G THOMAS

Doddington Road

Benwick

Mediation idea deserves a lot of consideration

I read with interest last week's article My Son's Bullying Ordeal.

Bullying seems to be a problem in most schools and should be aggressively managed by schools through awareness, prevention, and firm response to bullying incidents.

However, my experience with Lionel Walden School, having had two children in the school, has been the exact opposite of Mrs Keil. I have found Mr Barron and his staff to be especially receptive to parents' concerns and committed to resolving problems.

Mrs Keil writing to the Cambs Times about her son's bullying in response to Lionel Walden's "glowing" Ofsted report strikes me as just bringing up sour grapes.

A lot parents from outside of the village elect to bring their children to Lionel Walden, rather than schools in their own areas, because of its consistently excellent Ofsted reports.

The school provides a good quality education to its pupils, and it deserves to have that fact recognised in its reports. I cannot see how unannounced inspections would resolve bullying any better than announced inspections. But I do think that Mrs Keil's idea of a mediation service could be a good one in some circumstances.

Also, there is an abundance of advice on bullying for both parents and students at http://www.childline.org.uk/extra/bullyingindex.asp

J THOMPSON

Oaktree Close

Doddington

No radiation

I WOULD like to make a few comments concerning mobile phone masts. I am not saying I am an expert in this field, but I have worked as a rigger building masts and installing the antennae. Also any tall structure has been used for the purpose of mobile phone and other communications - structures such as water towers, civic centres, hospitals, high rise flats.

As far as I am aware there is no radiation from the antennae at a height. The communication companies can no doubt confirm this.

Usually masts are slimline or even large poles. If they are too unsightly they can be painted to blend in. We have painted them green, brown, grey, black, even white and blue. Unfortunately, like electric pylons and wind turbines, the masts are a necessity if you want mobile phones.

A lot of these masts also carry other communication systems, including those for the police and emergency services.

Of course I sympathise with the objectors and wish them well. The planners have a difficult task. If they reject the applications and the companies appeal I'm pretty sure the planning inspector would overrule the council.

R W HARVEY

March

Cleaner road

IT was interesting to read your article on mud on the road and your correspondents' replies.

I have for some time moaned about mud on the road but felt no one cared. In Benwick I think we have the muddiest roads in the county, unless someone knows different?

Regarding Mr Sibley's remarks in last week's Cambs Times, he seems to have missed the point. We are not asking for farmers and contractors to put their lives at risk cleaning the roads, but to clean their vehicles and implements before going on the roads.

MIKE BENTHAM

Doddington Road

Benwick

Mobile masts 'no health risk'

YOUR comment column last week suggested that many people in the Fens believe that mobile phone masts 'provide an unspecified health risk'.

Your readers can be reassured that many responsible scientific bodies around the world have clearly stated the position on masts and health.

The most recent statement from the World Health Organisation published in July 2005 says: "To date, all expert reviews on the health consequences of exposure to RF fields have reached the same conclusion: There have been no adverse health consequences established from exposure to RF fields at levels below the international guidelines on exposure limits published by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection."

The independent UK Health Protection Agency Advisory Group on Non Ionising Radiation (January 2004) had a very positive message for the public on masts and health: "Exposure levels from living near mobile phone base stations are extremely low, and the overall evidence indicates that they are unlikely to pose a risk to human health."

In fact, radiowave exposure from a typical base station is about 1,000 times less than from a mobile phone.

During the past five years, Ofcom has undertaken more than 400 random audits of base station radio-wave emissions. Measurements fshow the emission levels in all cases to be small fractions of the international health and safety exposure guidelines recommended by the Stewart Report and the Health Protection Agency for use within the UK.

There are now more than 61million mobile phones in use in the UK. Fenmen and Fenwomen use them daily. If we all wish to use and benefit from mobile phones then we must accept the need for the networks which underpin them.

MICHAEL DOLAN

Executive director

Mobile Operators Association

Russell Square House,

Russell Square

London

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