The bid for the Isle of Wight to become a test bed for 5G communications has been rejected, the Isle of Wight council say. It’s joined by news that UK 5G testbed bid winners were announced this morning.
Since OnTheWight broke the news about the Isle of Wight becoming a 5G testbed in January, there have been many concerns raised by Islanders. Those worried about the potential risk of 5G have spent considerable time researching the issue, using social media to raise awareness.
OnTheWight wrote to the council earlier this week asking,
“In light of allegations of 5G potentially having an impact on human and or animal health, could you please detail what investigations and / or assurances IWC have sought / received.
“Also details of any risk assessments the council has conducted and / or received in connection with implementing 5G on the Isle of Wight.”
Bid: “Not going to be supported”
On Friday afternoon spokesperson for the Isle of Wight Council replied,
“It is important to confirm that the council itself has not made an application for funding to become a 5G test bed.
“Officers of the council have however been liaising with a consortium of Island based organisations who have submitted a 5G test bed bid to the UK government – but it has subsequently been confirmed to members of that consortium that their bid is not going to be supported.”
Understanding risks of 5G “useful learning”
The council spokesperson went on to say,
“Providing enhanced wireless and broadband connectivity is seen by the council as a really important component of the Island’s economic offer, particularly given our physical disconnection. Understanding the benefits, as well as any risks of 5G in a properly structured test bed environment would potentially be a useful learning opportunity.
“The positive impact of better digital connectivity on issues such as health and social care and access to education are key aspects of the council actively exploring our digital future as an Island community. In any digital strategy we develop, the concerns that are rightly expressed would need to be actively investigated alongside the potential benefits.”
Full scrutiny assured
Residents who are worried about the possible risks of 5G to the health of those living on the Isle of Wight will be comforted to know that “any testing or deployment would be subject would be subject to full scrutiny” by members of the council.
The council spokesperson finished by saying,
“Those who have concerns regarding any potential negative impacts of 5G technology need to be assured that if the council is approached again to take a more active role in bringing 5G technology to the Island, or if any future test bed bid is successful, any testing or deployment would be subject full scrutiny under our member decision making and planning regulations.”