Inquiry into Ineos shale gas plans for Marsh Lane opens this week

Location map for Bramleymoor Lane2

Ineos plans for Derbyshire’s first shale gas well come under scrutiny at a public inquiry in Chesterfield this week.

The company proposes to use a drilling rig up to 60m tall to drill at a site 400m from homes in the village of Marsh Lane. The 2.4km deep well aims to show whether the rock is suitable for fracking for shale gas.

The inquiry, expected to last eight days, opens on Tuesday 19 June 2018 at 10am. It will hear evidence from representatives of Ineos, Derbyshire County Council and the local campaign group, Eckington Against Fracking. Local people are also expected to make statements.

The key issues that are likely to be discussed include the impacts of the scheme on:

  • Rural roads from heavy vehicles visiting the site
  • Open nature of the green belt
  • Nighttime noise levels

The planning inspector, Elizabeth Hill, will decide on behalf of the Government whether or not to grant planning permission.


Ineos submitted its application for the site off Bramleymoor Lane in May 2017.

Before Derbyshire County Council was ready to decide the application, the company announced in November 2017 it was appealing to the Planning Inspectorate, saying it could not wait any longer.

180205 DCC Marsh Lane8

Tweet by Lee Rowley MP follow Derbyshire County Council vote against the Marsh Lane shale gas proposal, 5 February 2018.

In January 2018, county council planning officers recommended that the authority did not oppose the application at an appeal.

But at a meeting of the council’s planning committee on 5 February 2018, members voted by nine votes to one against the proposals.

In May 2018, a small group of councillors, meeting in emergency session, maintained the opposition to the scheme on highway grounds.

This was despite a recommendation from officials that the council drop this reason for objection. A report by independent experts had not found sufficient evidence to support this case, the council said.

But the planning sub-committee voted by two votes to three to stand by the highway concerns.

Local opposition

180619 Marsh Lane inquiry

Eckington Against Fracking has been granted what is known as “Rule 6” status at the inquiry.

This allows the group to call its own witnesses, which are expected to include the local Conservative MP, Lee Rowley. The group also has the right to cross-examine Ineos witnesses.

At the time of writing, a crowd-funding appeal by Eckington Against Fracking had raised £4,470 for legal and professional help at the inquiry.

A protest outside the public inquiry is planned for 9am on the opening day.

Inquiry details

The inquiry is at the Market Hall, Assembly Rooms, Soresby Street, Chesterfield.

It is expected to sit daily Tuesday 19 June-Friday 22 June and Tuesday 26-Friday 29 June. After the opening day, the start time is expected to be 9am or 9.30am. We’ll update when this is confirmed.

Members of the public can attend the inquiry. There is space for about 180 and seating is allocated on a first come-first served basis, Derbyshire County Council said. There will be a bag search. Banners cannot be taken into the inquiry but there is a place where they can be stored.

A decision is expected after the end of the inquiry.

DrilOrDrop will be reporting from the hearings.


DrillOrDrop page on the Marsh Lane inquiry

Derbyshire County Council page on the inquiry

Planning application

Ineos Bramleymoor Lane webpage

Eckington Against Fracking fundraising page

20 replies »

  1. For those interested, Jim’s book being released on Wednesday.

    Get your orders in quick. Proceeds to help fund the legal team.(Sorry, for those in Scotland I suspect it might be on the banned list.)

    Just trying to maintain the Crowd Funding balance.

    • If you keep rubbing those crystal balls together paranormal peeny, you’ll wear them down?

      Do you do tea the leaves as well? Oh, sorry, its Coffee grounds in USA isnt it?

      You are going to meet a tall dark stranger? Sir Hugh Janus is selling his new book?

      • Tea the leaves? That must be the USA version? In this country its just Tea Leaves, oh well, takes all sorts? Darjeeling, Jasmin, Chai, and apparently Boston Harbour Party Tea? Not enough sugar perhaps?

  2. I agree with you GBK. It will be the consequences that follow that could be interesting.

    If costs are awarded against DCC, how will Mr. Rowley defend such costs to the tax payer, when a decision was made against the recommendations of the “experts”. (I thought I read somewhere over the weekend that the public ie. the tax payers, would prefer expert opinion decides such issues?)

    • Surely the definition of an “expert” is “An “ex” is a has been, and a “spurt” is a drip under pressure”?

      Sounds about right?

  3. Oh dear Sherwulfe, you have forgotten (again) that INEOS is a private company, owned by the directors.

    I don’t think pension fund investments are of any interest to Jim.

    Perhaps if you coughed up £20 you might actually learn something, rather than simply posting fiction. Nah, far more comfortable in dream land.

    • That the cost of a peeny coffee grinds reading martin?
      That tall dark stranger gets around a bit doesn’t he?
      SHJ book sales must be almost in double figures by now?

    • Dear me, Martin, can’t you see the trickle that turns into a torrent?

      As INEOS has substantial loans, and as banks look to their inevitable withdrawal of investments in fossil fuels, plastics and polluting chemicals on our food, then things will get tough for companies such as these.

      The good news is that pension funds members can vote with their consciences; insurance companies are already divesting, food companies divesting, soon no longer a demand for toxic poisons and INEOS will be consigned to oblivion;enjoy while you can, like climate change, the demise of oil and gas investment is coming faster than expected and some will surely be caught with their proverbial pants down!

  4. No trickle, no torrent, for INEOS, Sherwulfe.

    Keep on trying to mislead people. You certainly seem to be tying yourself in knots, but very unconvincing to anyone else who bothers to check the structure of INEOS.

    However, nice to see you are “all” still singing from the same “him” sheet, of no knowledge regarding corporate structures. Barclays Brothers will withdraw their funding next?

    You were talking the same twaddle months ago, then Ratcliffe is identified as the UKs wealthiest individual. Mystic Meg has done so much better.

    Never mind, the book is published tomorrow. Go on, you know you want to, get a copy so you can post with some level of knowledge. (I see the flaw in my suggestion.)

    • So you will be in denial till the end? The flood is coming; hope you have a galley slave spot on one of the yachts, Martin?

      Perhaps a little more research into those business exploits and relationships with other big players; you may be unpleasantly surprised….

      I promise not to say I told you so [whoops, dunnit; never mind] enjoy your oblivion……

  5. Oh, “one of his yachts!” On tick? Anti ship building now?

    So, the “idea” for today is that debt is bad? Funny that, disallow corporations to operate with debt, and you simply transfer that debt to the public finances as more money needs borrowing instead of corporate profits being taxed. Then, why not target personal debt and stop mortgages? And the Premiership football clubs-how about their total debt? Or, move just a little further-and become N.Korea!

    Nice little pun about the rivers-in de nile, but otherwise, still twaddle. Buy the book-education is a marvellous thing. And reading is such fun when your plastic keyboard wears out.

    • nope; such desperation in your rhetoric.

      No golden ticket for you then despite your unofficial fan club, never mind; keep to the point…your side is going down slowly but surely; remember ‘one day the poor will have nothing to eat but the rich’ 🙂

  6. Yep-going down (or along) slowly but surely! Into the shale, soon be fracking, whilst you post a smiley face in place of content. Be a lot of those soon.

    Progress does eventually occur through the mist of process. Are you poised in anticipation? Not long to wait.

    Meanwhile, to keep you amused until then you should just about have time to read the first chapter. Oh. By the way another energy company announces an increase to it’s standard tariff today-the second one this year in this particular case. Just a shame the “poor” will have to eat the “rich” uncooked.
    Little bit inconvenient for when economics are able to be calculated rather than speculated-shortly?

    • So, MC, another twisty path from you to avoid the inevitable?

      Here’s a simple illustration to see how you will be shafted by the ‘super’ rich:

      Picture a see saw. On one side is a member of the super rich, to balance, on the other 99 people, some of which will have died of hunger, preventable disease or poor sanitation by the time I have posted this – sobering thought.

      Now let’s look at these ponzi LTD companies that exist.
      Picture an Airbus 380 filled to capacity [525 to 853 workers and sub-contractors depending on class] flying along. This jet was bought for $400 million by a loan from a bank. After a year the jet is revalued at $900 million by a co-operative ‘valuer’ and an additional loan raised on the ‘asset’; this money is siphoned out to the directors. So, now all happy, the plane on route to its final destination big profit.

      But the orders are cancelled, no fuel for the plane, it drops out of the sky taking all on board with it; the knock on effect is severe, all families of occupants affected psychologically and economically, the bank suffers huge losses and puts a hand out to the governance who are forced to pay out otherwise repercussions more severe; ring any bells? And what of the director, well they don’t give a stuff; 66 million population that’s only $15 each.

      And another bright spark sees the scam and another and another; that $15 turns into millions and takes away money for health and education; in the meantime the directors are sitting on a tax haven beach or yacht somewhere writing a book……

      The good news is that more and more are waking up to the scam, refusing to bail out the scammers, withdrawing investment and turning away from virtual reality. One by one, more and more, and those who are still in denial fall from the sky without a parachute.

      🙂 😉 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 – just cannot control these emojis; sigh.

      • Magnificent summary Sher, there is another simile (not a “smiley”) isn’t there?
        At the end of the dinosaur era, the asteroid had hit, the climate was devastated, billions of creatures had perished, in a last few sheltered valleys, the carnivores roamed and got fat and lazy feeding off the corpses and the starving herbivore remnants.

        They were bizarre out of nightmare creatures, just massive jaws and stomachs on legs, tiny brains but crafty and relentless eating machines with atrophied fore limbs, and no other purpose but to mate and feed, feed and mate. Evolutionary dead ends, the last screaming word at the end of the dying lifeline.

        Many previous smaller scavenger species followed the massive carnivores around, feeding off the remains and fighting over the scraps and using the bulk of the big carnivore to hide behind, waiting for the fresh blood and meat from the scraps of the big guys gory
        After a while, all the corpses were rotted away or just piles of bones and then the fat carnivores and their hangers on had to hunt down the last few herbivores, and soon then they too were gone.
        The big carnivores eyed the small carnivores and for a while it was a brief dinosaur eat dinosaur feeding frenzy. The hangers on were now just scattered toothpicks.
        And then the last two dinosaur carnivores kicked over the mounds of bones as far as the eye could see.
        And then those last two massive carnivores eyed each other up and circled warily, there was one last fight for supremacy.
        That last carnivore burped and looked around for the next meal, but there was no such thing left alive anywhere.
        As it slowly starved to death, it remembered the good old days of plenty, and it looked at the silent uninhabited valley and asked

        “I think I’ll write a book?”

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