Australian anti-drilling activists bring their film and methods to the UK

Bentley effect poster

Campaigners who fought off unconventional gas in Australia are sharing their successful methods with communities in the UK in May and June.

Activists Brendan Shoebridge, Simon Clough and Ian Gaillard from northern New South Wales are screening the documentary The Bentley Effect at 29 venues. They will be answering questions at screenings and providing training in non-violent protest planning and methods.

Many of the screenings are in places now in the UK front line for fracking and unconventional oil and gas.

The documentary, filmed over five years, chronicles how people in the Northern Rivers region, facing plans by Metgasco to drill for coal seam gas, organised themselves to rally in a series of peaceful blockades.

In the final confrontation, thousands gathered in the farming valley of Bentley. They faced 850 riot police who had been ordered to break up the protest. As a result of the stand-off, the state government suspended the gas company’s licences in May 2014 and a year later bought then back for $25m.

The film’s director, Brendan Shoebridge, told ABC News:

“The whole world needs to recreate what we saw at Bentley.

“There was a groove that happened and it was a phenomenal thing where an amazing tipping point occurred and that was just to save that one specific region, but the world has to get into that groove.

“I would hope the world sees it and starts to think ‘Well, how can I take a lead in this must-win battle?'”

Simon Clough, the former deputy mayor of Lismore, told ABC News he hoped the film would inspire people in the UK to “protect their land and their livelihoods”.

“This is an international and global crisis, the whole unconventional gas drilling threatens everyone’s water and everyone’s air. It’s a global problem not just for the Northern Rivers and Australia.”

Film trailer

Film screening details

Thursday 11 May


6pm-9pm, Room 243, School of Advanced Study, University of London, Senate House, Malet Street, London, WC1E 7HU. Details

Friday 12 May

Pulborough, West Sussex

6.30pm-9pm, Pullborough Village Hall, Swan View, Pullborough West Sussex RH20 2BF. Details

Sunday 14 May


7pm-9.15pm, One Church, Gloucester Place Brighton, BN1 4AA. Details

Monday 15 May


7pm-10.30pm, CCA 350 Sauchiehall Street Glasgow G2 3JD. Details

Tuesday 16 May


6.30pm-10pm, Trinity Church Falkirk, Manse Place Falkirk FK1 1JN. Details


7pm-10.30pm, Kirkintilloch Miners’ Welfare & Social Club Saramango St Kirkintilloch Glasgow G663AA. Details

Wednesday 17 May

East Kilbride

7pm-10.30pm, Murray Owen Centre,1 Liddell Grove East, East Kilbride, Glasgow G75 9AD. Details

Thursday 18 May


Community response to fracking workshop, led by filmmakers and activists, 12.30pm-5pm, Drummond Library Room G.10, High School Yards [far corner, inner quad], 12 Infirmary Street, Edinburgh EH10 4SN. Details and to register

5.30pm: Screening room, G.04, 50 George Sq, University of Edinburgh EH 8 9LH. Details 

Friday 19 May

Findhorn, Forres

6.30pm-10pm, Findhorn Community Theatre, The Park, Findhorn, Forres IV36 3TZ. Details

Sunday 21 May

Hebden Bridge

3pm-6pm: Film screening and workshop, Trades Club, Holme Street, Hebden Bridge HX7 8EE

Tuesday 23 May


7pm-9pm, Halton Mill, Mill Lane, Halton, LA2 6ND. Details

Wednesday 24 May

Frodsham, Cheshire

6pm-10pm, Frodsham Community Centre, Fluin Lane Frodsham WA6 7QN, Frodsham, Chester. Details

St Annes, Lancashire

7pm-10pm, St Annes Island Cinema, South Promenade, Lytham St Annes FY8 1LY. Details and to book

Thursday 25 May


11.30am-5.30pm: Workshop, Bureau Centre for the Arts, 25 Victoria Street, Blackburn
5.30pm-9pm: Screening at Bureau Centre for the Arts, 25 Victoria St Blackburn. Details

Friday 26 May

Ribby Hall, Wrea Green, Lancashire

6.15pm-7.45pm: Screening, Woodlands Suite, Ribby Hall, Ribby Hall Village, Ribby Road, Preston PR4 2PR. Details and to book

8pm-10pm: Workshop, Woodlands Suite, Ribby Hall Village, Ribby Road, Preston PR4 2PR. Details and to book

Saturday 27 May


9.30am-2.30pm: Workshop, Central Methodist Hall, Oldham St, Manchester M1 1JQ
3pm:Film screening, Central Methodist Hall-Manchester Oldham St M1 1JQ. Details

Sunday 28 May


1pm-5.30pm: Workshop, Friends Meeting House, 189 St George’s Road, PrestonPR1. Details
6pm: Screening, Friends meeting house-Preston 189 St George’s Rd, Preston PR1. Details

Tuesday 30 May

Gilling East, North Yorkshire

6.30pm-9.30pm: Village hall, Pottergate, Gilling East, YO62 4JJ. Details

Wednesday 31 May

Helmsley, North Yorkshire

6.30pm-9pm: The Feathers Hotel, Market Place Helmsley, York Y062 5BH-The Feathers Hotel, Market Place Helmsley, York Y062 5BH. Details

Thursday 1 Jun


6pm-9pm: Scarborough Library Vernon Rd, Scarborough YO11 2NN. Details

Friday 2 Jun


7pm: Pickering Community Junior School, Middleton Road, Pickering YO18 8AJ. Details

Saturday 3 Jun

Castleton, Derbyshire

7pm-9pm: Friends of the Earth Basecamp, Castleton Youth Hostel, Castleton, Derbyshire

Sunday 4 Jun

Mansfield, Nottinghamshire

6.30pm-10pm: Sacred Sound Healing & Arts Centre, Intake Business Park, Kirkland Avenue, Mansfield, Notts NG18 5QP. Details

Monday 5 Jun

Driffield, East Riding of Yorkshire

7pm-10pm: Old Town Hall (behind The Bell Hotel) 46 Market Place, Driffield YO25 6AN

Tuesday 6 Jun


6.30pm-7.30pm: Totnes-Civic Hall, Civic Square, Totnes, Devon TQ9 5QH

Wednesday 7 Jun

Clevedon, North Somerset

6pm-10pm: Clevedon Community Centre 2 Princess Road, Clevedon BS21 7SZ Details

Thursday 8 Jun


7pm-10.30pm: The Hive Dalston, 260-264 Kingsland Road, London, E8 4DG. Details

Saturday 10 Jun


Time and venue to be confirmed

Sunday 11 Jun

Isle of Wight

Strategy & NVDA Workshop.  Isle of Wight, Arreton Community Centre, PO30 3AD
Doors open 12 noon, workshop 13:00 – 1600 Film screening later (see below)
Map  Register

Film screening, Isle of Wight, Arreton Community Centre, PO30 3AD 18:30 – 21:30  Map Register

6 replies »

  1. Take note NFU – where will your subsidies come from after Brexit?

    Of course agriculture is responsible for most of the global groundwater pollution…..

  2. Moratorium in Tasmania to protect agriculture and also moratorium in Northern Territories. And don’t IGas have CBM sites? All unconventional gas should be banned in my opinion.

  3. ​These are links to the artificial leaf technology being developed now across the world, what is our government on this? Nothing! in fact they prefer to dump an 800% tax increase to stifle development. Go figure, who persuaded them to do that?​

    There are some that even produce power from rain and can be printed on windows,

    There are also new free energy devices being tested and sold as we look at this, times are changing, the cork is out of the bottle, nothing will stop this now. I’ll put some links up later.

    ​I’ve put all the links in parentheses, just copy and paste the address inside the parentheses into a browser.​

    ​( ​https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J556uXwrjII​ )​

    ​( ​https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkkNgGtGZuo​ )​

    ​( ​https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ujxeg1QRb50​ )​

    ​( ​https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3EJDNQTNd7U​ )​

    ​( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJmAGaZZXPY​ )​

  4. A little hop scotch song for your kids:

    My Momma, your Momma, gonna stop a frack,
    My Momma, your Momma, peaceful on a track,
    My Momma, your Momma, frackers gonna cry,
    My Momma, your Momma, Aussies now ally!

    Frack number one, poison in a river!
    Frack number two, gotta boo to give her!
    Frack number three, gonna watch her flare,
    Frack number four, nanas make them scare.
    Frack number five, broken all the rules,
    Frack number six, watch us make them fools,
    Frack number seven, lies fly up to heaven,
    Frack number eight, flowers on the gate,
    Frack number nine, gonna draw a line,
    Frack number ten, we will end it then.

    My Momma, your Dadda, gonna stop a frack,
    My Momma, your Dadda, protesters from outback,
    My Momma, your Dadda, frackers gonna cry,
    Our Momma, your Dadda, to frack we say “Bye Bye”!

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