Lancashire County Council said today it needs more time to make a decision on Cuadrilla’s planning applications to drill and hydraulic fracture up to eight gas wells in the Fyld near Blackpool.
The council had previously agreed with Cuadrilla it would determine the application for Preston New Road by November 5th this year. The council also agreed a decision date for the Roseacre Wood application of November 18th.
But in a statement today, the council said it had written to Cuadrilla asking for further time to “receive, organise, assess, and present all the relevant information for the application”.
The statement added: “The planners have been working since the applications were received in June to consult with the public and other statutory agencies, and assess the applications, to ensure all the information needed to determine them is put before the Development Control Committee”.
The council is now seeking to extend the time agreed to determine the application for the Preston New Road site to December 31st and the Roseacre application to January 31st next year.
A Cuadrilla spokesman told The Telegraph said: “We have accepted Lancashire County Council’s request for a further extension to the determination period for our planning applications to drill, hydraulically fracture and test the flow of gas at our proposed sites at Preston New Road and Roseacre Wood.
“Following such a long and comprehensive consultation and review period for both applications we look forward to a final determination for both applications.”
[Updated on 24/10/14 with Cuadrilla quote from Telegraph]