The companies behind the Horse Hill oil well near Gatwick have been granted a five-year extension to their exploration and development licences, the operator has announced.
A news came in a statement this morning from UK Oil & Gas Investments PLC, one of the leading partners in HHDL, which holds PEDL137 and PEDL246 in Surrey.
According to the statement, the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA) had informed HHDL it had extended both licences until 2021.
The extension covers the “retention areas” of the PEDLs. This is all or part of the licence area that can be retained by a company until an expiry date and subject to a work programme.
But the statement added that the retention areas could be extended further or modified with agreement from the OGA.
According to the statement, the work programme for the extension comprised:
- Production tests on the Kimmeridge and Portland formations of the Horse Hill-1 well
- Drilling a side-track HH-1z into the Kimmeridge Limestone
- Horse Hill-2 (HH-2) Portland appraisal well
- 50km2 of 3D seismic surveying
- 25km of 2D seismic survey
- Additional exploration well in PEDL246
Stephen Sanderson, executive chairman of UKOG, said the extensions would:
“ensure that the knowledge gained from the Company’s forthcoming extensive 2017 Broadford Bridge, Horse Hill and Holmwood drilling and test campaign, can be fully incorporated into future Kimmeridge Limestone step-out wells in PEDL246 and PEDL137. 2017 is set to become a pivotal year for the Company.”
Action at three Weald sites in 2017
UKOG also gave details of plans for three sites in which it has an interest in the second half of 2017.
Horse Hill, Surrey
The planning application for production testing and additional wells is scheduled to be decided at Surrey County Council planning committee meeting in July 2017, the statement said.
If permissions were granted, UKOG said operations would begin in the second half of 2017.
Broadford Bridge, West Sussex
Work is planned to start in second quarter of 2017, UKOG said. It has planned a deviated “slant” well that would penetrate four naturally-fractured Kimmeridge Limestone reservoirs. The geology is described as a mirror-image of the Horse Hill fault block.
UKOG said operations would include the acquisition of coring, electric log and borehole imaging data to provide information on limestone reservoirs and natural fracturing.
The statement said all pre-drill tenders have been received and a drilling rig chosen. Civil construction works necessary to commence drilling have been completed.
The Broadford Bridge well would be drilled with a natural, biodegradable drilling fluid, UKOG said.
“This zero-hazard drilling fluid (or “mud”) will ensure that there can be zero contamination of any groundwater via the drilling process.”
This site, also known as Bury Hill Wood and Leith Hill, is scheduled to be drilled in the second half of 2017, UKOG said. The site, near Dorking is in PEDL143, 8km west of Horse Hill.