Your front-page report on the new Vodafone telecommunications mast in the Painswick Valley (“Phone mast blunder”, September 2) raises fundamental questions about the effective capture of modern culture by unaccountable corporations – a toxic process that has now been underway for over four decades under all main political parties, but particularly under the Conservatives.

In your report we are told that Vodafone will be going ahead with this mast, even though it was rejected by the local democratic planning process – albeit that Stroud District Council then made an alleged mistake in being just a day late in informing the company of their decision.

Under these unusual circumstances, an ethically responsible organisation which put the public interest first would recognise and accept the local democratic planning decision, and not seize on a legal technicality to drive through their private financial interest, in the teeth of both the planning process and widespread local opposition. But no, this private corporation decides to ride roughshod over local sentiment, and to impose a mast when hardly anyone seems to want it.

If we wanted a paradigm case as to why these decisions should never be in the hands of profits-driven private corporations, here we have it.

Let's hope that Stroud District Council up their game when dealing with future applications of this type, especially as 5G applications are likely just around the corner, and will surely be hotly contested.

Yours etc

Amanda Godber, Dr Richard House, Gabriel Millar and Darren Nicks

Stroud Stop 5G Campaign Group