What happens on the final day of Cuadrilla fracking inquiry?

Inquiry 7

After a long-weekend break, the Cuadrilla fracking inquiry at Blackpool Football Club reaches its final day tomorrow (Wednesday 16th March).

The inquiry has been in session since 9th February reviewing whether Cuadrilla should be allowed to frack at Roseacre Wood and at Preston New Road, Little Plumpton in Lancashire. It has also been considering plans for monitoring schemes around the two sites.

By the end of tomorrow, the inspector, Wendy McKay will have sat through 19 days of arguments and spent another day on a site visit. She has heard evidence from 26 expert witnesses and 143 members of the public, 15 of them in favour and 128 against.

DrillOrDrop has been reporting from every session and there are links to all the reports here.

Last week, the inquiry heard the closing statements from four groups: Friends of the Earth, Preston New Road Action Group and Newton-with-Clifton Parish Council who opposed the plans and the North and Western Chamber of Commerce, which is in favour. DrillOrDrop report

Tomorrow (Wednesday) the final three groups involved in the inquiry will make their closing statements.

First up at 10am is Robin Green, barrister for Roseacre Awareness Group, representing opponents of the Roseacre Wood scheme, and Wharles, Roseacre & Treales Parish Council.

He is followed by Alan Evans, the barrister for Lancashire County Council, and Nathalie Lieven, QC for Cuadrilla.

Ms Lieven will then make an application for costs on behalf of the company. None of the other groups are expected to apply for costs.

The Communities and Local Government Secretary, Greg Clark, will make the final decision on the appeal, following a recommendation from Wendy McKay. She may give some indication tomorrow of when that will be.

DrillOrDrop will be reporting live on the final day. We’ll also bring you reaction and a summary of the key planning points that have been discussed over the past five weeks.

Background to the inquiry

Link to posts from the inquiry

This report is part of DrillOrDrop’s  Rig Watch project.  Rig Watch receives funding from the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust. More details here

14 replies »

  1. Hi
    I would like to thank you for all your hard work. Your reports are invaluable to groups who may have to face planning applications where they live. The work of all involved has been first class in highlighting the shoddy work of the gas companies. We have to show we can not put our children’s health and safety in the hands of irresponsible people who will do everything underhanded to get what they want. If you are facing a planning application make a note of all the 10 points and scrutinise everything in detail. Don’t take anything face value, make the companies work hard and the planners harder to prove to you they have done their job properly , they are not all as good doing their job as Lancashire. The Government will stop inquires next saying they are too expensive, Stop them before they get planning concent. Thanks once again for all your hard work.

    • Hi Ellen Thanks very much for your comment. I’m pleased the posts have been useful. I’m working on a review of all the planning policy that’s come up during the inquiry – aiming to get it out tomorrow. Thanks again and best wishes, Ruth

  2. Thank you Ruth for your very comprehensive reporting, during this inquiry. It has been most helpful for those unable to attend, day by day.

  3. A marathon reporting event Ruth and without you none of us would have been able to know what was going on from the national media which is intent on ignoring the inquiry, though for sure the Independent has kept up with a few reports now and again.

    The live streaming of the inquiry I found very hit and miss, sadly, one hopes Cuadrillas drilling is more competent, though clearly this has been proven not to be the case so far.

    It would be great if we could have a de brief of what next and where for Fylde/Preston protestors and drillordrop, if at all possible, as it would be a shame if this news outlet devoted to fracking didn’t continue with all the good work.

    • Yes, thank you for keeping us updated, Ms Hayhurst, fantastic job. I’ve seen the chaos + destruction to people’s lives caused by fracking in Pennsylvannia + Northern Germany. The U.K. Is far too densely populated to have this desperate and Co2 emitting fossil fuel industry. It’s only there to line the pockets of it’s shareholders, frackers may as well all go home and focus on renewable energy or is that too difficult? Listen to what citizens and local people want. They DON’T want fracking.

  4. How you can claim this site to be an independent journalistic site is rubbish.

    You are no more independent than the FOE are pro-shale!

    It’s a joke, just as the majority of your posters who leave messages of support are, strangely they all appear to be anti-shale, perhaps just like you Ms. Hayhurst.

    Why even you must had a giggle at the ridiculous lengths some of these wet behind the ears protesters went to when making presentations.

    It’s about time you crazies embraced the 21st century!

    • Michael Dobbie,

      Anyone, pro or anti-fracking can leave a message on this forum, WHATS YOUR POINT ???

      You have a lot to say against people who have made a stand against fracking, calling some of them, “quote” wet behind the ears protesters.

      You clearly must have a lot of evidance to back up your sweeping accusations.

      I look forward to reading what specific parts of their representations you are referring to. Better still I would very much welcome viewing a copy of the ” presentation ” you made at the Cuadrilla, public fracking enquiry.

  5. mar g the national government have been totally transparent with their information, and unlike this site have remained totally independent, as they should be.

    As for your comment about Cuadrilla not being competent with their drilling, please expand on your claim.

    When did they drill last?

    • It would be a waste of my time jackthelad providing you with anything that would be unbiased, your response says it all for me.

      As for this forum being available for pro or anti shale postings, what a crock of sh.t!

      Let me take a stab here laddie, you’d be anti 😉

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