Louth

Campaigners raise thousands to fight oil drilling

Hundreds stood together in the rain to protest against a decision to allow for oil drilling in the Lincolnshire wolds.

Egdon Resources submitted plans to extend the time it spends drilling for oil in Biscathorpe by three years.

Campaigners were “horrified” after the Lincolnshire County Council voted to approve the plans, despite hundreds of objections.

Residents stood together in the rain on Saturday, September 8 to raise the remaining £12,000 for a legal challenge to the plans’ approval.

A ‘party in a field’ hosted local live music, lunch and drinks to raise money for the campaign.

The residents are now halfway to their £24,000 target and have now instructed their lawyer to begin proceedings.

Mathilda Dennis, organic farmer, said: “It’s amazing that all of these local people came out in the rain today to meet farmers and families standing up for our rights to say no to drilling in this precious corner of Lincolnshire.

“We said no to the oil drill and we won’t allow profit at the expense of people’s health, local nature and the area’s biggest livelihood; farming.”

The residents say that the oil company will be drilling in a “fragile” chalk stream.

A survey by the Lincolnshire Protectors found that nine out of ten of those who responded are against oil or gas drilling.

Elizabeth William, Frack Free Lincs, said: “Fracking company Egdon Resources have signalled that they intend to start drilling for deep sandstone oil reserves at the heart of the only Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the East Midlands.

“Whether or not this drill means fracking, it means certain environmental degradation, and harm to human and wildlife habitats.

“Ultimately we will surely lose the AONB status and the chalk streams will be irreparably contaminated.”

Since being given planning permission, Egdon said that low crude oil prices and delays in production at another well site have prevented the completion of the work.

But Paul Foster, speaking on behalf of Egdon, argued previously that there is a need to explore for fossil fuels.

“Government policy is clear on the need for indigenous fossil fuels,” he said.