Documents seen by DrillOrDrop this evening suggest that drilling at the oil exploration site at Broadford Bridge in West Sussex has not gone according to plan.
The Oil and Gas Authority’s records show that the Broadford Bridge-1 well was side-tracked last month.
Another document, confirmed by the Environment Agency as the amended waste management plan, also refers to a mechanical side track.
These side tracks are often drilled at this stage to bypass problems with the original wellbore.
The documents help to explain why the drill rig is still at Broadford Bridge and flow testing hasn’t started.
When DrillOrDrop visited the site in June, UKOG executive chairman, Stephen Sanderson, said he expected to begin flow testing in mid July.
The rig was due to move to the Lidsey oil field near Bognor Regis. The documents also shed light on today’s announcement by Angus Energy that there would be a delay in drilling its horizontal production well at Lidsey.
The Broadford Bridge site near Billingshurst is operated by the UKOG subsidiary, Kimmeridge Oil and Gas Ltd (KOGL). It is exploring for oil in the Kimmeridge limestone.
According to the OGA public wellbore search, the mechanical sidetrack was spudded on 29 July 2017, and named BB-1z.
The amended waste management plan, dated 26 July 2017, gives some information about the reason for the sidetrack.
It said the 8 ½” section of the original borehole is washed out, which means it “contains regions of diameter greater than the 8 ½” drill bit size.
The document said:
“It has not been possible to run the essential 7” steel casing in the 8 ½” hole section due to the washed out regions, so a side track is required for safety reasons”.
Yesterday (Wednesday 8 August), DrillOrDrop asked UKOG if a sidetrack had been drilled at Broadford Bridge, but it declined to comment. Today, we asked the company questions about the contents of the amended waste management plan and the impact of the side track on operations at Broadford Bridge but it has not responded.
In online forums, investors have been calling for information about Broadford Bridge from UKOG.
An UKOG statement on Broadford Bridge, issued on 31 July 2017 under the Regulatory News Service (RNS), did not refer to the sidetrack:
“All flow test regulatory permissions now in place follow review by the Health and Safety Executive (“HSE”). Work continues to “complete” the well as a potential oil producer to be followed by a rig-less flow test, encompassing multiple Kimmeridge zones over a total aggregate perforated section of 926ft”.
Updated 10/08/2017 to include screenshots from amended Waste Management Plan and link to OGA Public Wellbore Search tool