Residents share fracking fears

A packed St Chad's Church Hall in Poulton, where residents raised concerns about gas shale fracking operations.
A packed St Chad's Church Hall in Poulton, where residents raised concerns about gas shale fracking operations.

Protesters against a controversial Fylde coast gas drilling spoke out at a public meeting last night.

Around 80 residents across the county gathered in Poulton to watch a presentation by campaign group Ribble Estuary Against Fracking.

Shale gas company Cuadrilla Resources – who will use the controversial technique to extract gas from deep under the Fylde coast – have three sites locally in Singleton, Weeton and Westby.

The firm recently admitted causing two earthquakes which hit the Poulton area earlier this year.

John Bailie, of Concerned Residents of Poulton (CROP), which hosted the event in St Chad’s Hall, said the meeting would allow those affected by the tremors to find out more.

John Hodgson, of Poulton, said April’s tremor caused damage to his house.

He said: “I was half asleep when I heard a big bang, it sounded as if a lorry had crashed into the wall.

“The whole house was shaking and the bed was moving across the room, it was frightening.

“A few days later we found water on the bathroom floor and there was a hairline crack in the water tank.”

Poulton resident Neil Scott added: “The combination of Halite’s gas storage facility in Over Wyre and Cuadrilla’s “fracking” seems to me a recipe for disaster.”

Representatives from the Environment Agency, Cuadrilla and Friends of the Earth also attended.

A Cuadrilla spokesman defended plans and said extracting shale gas was “part of a far bigger UK energy debate”.

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