Thursday 7th August 2014
At 5am a team of around 25 grandmothers, mothers and others from the Blackpool area set up a protection camp in a field earmarked for development by shale gas industry operators Cuadrilla. Stating that they had over the past three years, tried all lawful methods available to them to stop ‘fracking’ and it was now a matter of necessity. Cuadrilla has applied for planning permission for access roads on the field off Preston New Road to enable the building of the drilling rig; if Lancashire County Council (LCC) grants permission.
A few hours later 14,000 objection letters to the planning application were handed into the council offices in Preston by others from the Frack Free Lancashire coalition of local anti-fracking groups.
Today’s action comes exactly one week before the ‘Reclaim the Power’ anti-fracking action camp who plan to bring over 1000 people to camp in a location not yet confirmed in the Blackpool area in order to stand in solidarity with local groups. The Reclaim the Power camp will run 14-20 August, holding workshops and training as well as a day of direct action targeting Cuadrilla and its partners.
A spokesperson from the group said: “There has been massive growth in resistance here in Lancashire as well as across the UK and despite this, our government continues to push for fracking. We have done our research, spoken to those living in places across the world where fracking has already caused untold harm and come to the conclusion that this is an industry we will not have near our families. We don’t do this lightly, it is an awful thing to have to do but it is now a matter of self-defence.”