A SHARP increase in infant mortality, cancers and heart disease are just some of the health problems linked to waste incinerators, a world-renowned expert told a packed meeting of worried residents last night.

More than 300 people filled the Gerrards Suite at the Bellhouse Hotel, in Oxford Road, Gerrards Cross, for a talk by Dr Dick Van Steenis, a retired GP who has spoken out against other incinerators proposed in the country.

Other problems include increased infections and lower IQs caused by small particles emitted entering people's bodies, Dr Van Steenis said.

Residents reacted angrily during the meeting when they learned that it was questionable whether the only safe type of incinerator - as recommended by Dr Van Steenis - would be built.

Buckinghamshire County Council strongly denied it was a "done deal" and said that the contract for the work would not be awarded to a company until 2008.

Dr Van Steenis recommended a 'plasma gasification plant', which burns waste at higher temperatures.

The county council has two preferred sites in South Bucks - one at Wapseys Wood near Gerrards Cross, and the other at Springfield Farm near Beaconsfield.

The council wants the incinerator built to dispose of household waste because of the massive pressures on landfill space.