Tinker Lane anti-fracking campaigners face eviction from council land

180722 Tinker Lane Protection Camp TLPC

Tinker Lane Protectors Camp, 22 July 2018. Photo: Tinker Lane Protectors Camp

Councillors in north Nottinghamshire are seeking to evict an anti-fracking camp from their village.

Barnby Moor Parish Council has agreed to take legal action to evict the camp from its land at Tinker Lane Copse.

The camp was established on 24 June 2018 in protest at the IGas shale gas exploration site nearby on the A634 between the village and Blyth.

A message sent to a Tinker Lane Facebook group this week by parish council chairman, Charles Fraser, said:

“I would like to inform you that Barnby Moor Parish Council is now taking legal action to evict the squatters from Parish Council land.

“There are two issues, Fracking & trespass, fracking the Parish Council have an open mind but setting up camp on parish land is an other matter.”

180820 Charles Fraser Facebook message

Facebook post by Charles Fraser

He told DrillOrDrop the matter was now in the hands of the council’s lawyers. He said:

“Initially things were not a great problem. The camp was not visible from the road. But recently they hung a massive banner from the trees.

“We have asked them verbally that we would like them to leave. They said no and the only way to deal with it is through solicitors.”

Mr Fraser said the campaigners had not asked permission to use the land. He added:

“The copse used to be an allotment plot. One or two residents over the past year have talked about returning the site to allotments.”

A special meeting of the parish council on the issue agreed to obtain a possession order for the copse.

180701 TLPC2

Photo: Tinker Lane Protectors Camp.

The Tinker Lane Protectors Camp responded in a Facebook statement:

“Today it was confirmed to us that Barnby Moor Parish council have decided to go ahead with a forced eviction rather than keeping an open dialogue with us, as we tried to establish with them.

“This was to reach an agreement that did not impact on the community and re generated the space we currently are holding as part of our efforts to delay or stop the toxic fracking industry just 1.4 miles from their homes.

“This space has not been used for over twenty years and was in a sorry state when we found it. The council has not consulted the parish or anyone who lives in the village and have committed to an expensive process that threatens the future of their own homes.

“We would like to find a peaceful and non expensive way to resolve this situation for all parties involved. We are asking for you to reach out and help us find some land to move to in order to sustain this campaign. But in the mean time we are resolved to carrying on our community work and resistance to IGas and fracking…. this means we will be staying put until we have further info on the situation and possible further actions of the parish council.

“But we still need shelter and security while the weather changes and we face the possibility of overnight visits from bailiffs or worse!!”

180730 Tinker Lane TLPC

IGas site at Tinker Lane, 30 July 2018. Photo: Tinker Lane Protectors Camp

The IGas Tinker Lane site was granted planning permission on 21 March 2017. The application was opposed by Barnby Moor and four other local parish councils, as well as Bassetlaw District Council. Barnby Moor Parish Council reported that a parish consultation found that 75% of participants objected to the application.

The IGas community fund lists a contribution for 2018 to Barnby Moor Parish Council for kitchen improvements to the village hall.

DrillOrDrop page on Tinker Lane


48 replies »

  1. A message to the parish councillors of Barnby Moor Parish Council from Balcombe, Sussex (but from someone who grew up in Derbyshire, went to Nottingham University and still has connections there, visiting often).

    In 2013 when an oil company came to Balcombe, we felt bullied, our little village suddenly overwhelmed by heavy industry. We learnt fast, about the democratic deficit both local and national, about the ‘permission creep’ nature of planning, about inadequate oversight by the regulators, the Environment Agency etc, about the inadequacy of UK laws and regulations and planning guidance, about how regulators and planners do not seem to care so long as their boxes are ticked and no one is likely to sue them, about how the police is on the side of industry, about air pollution, hazardous flares, potential water pollution, waste no one knew or knows how to treat, about the fact that exploring and exploiting this kind of geology requires a great number of wells…

    It was wicked. We felt we had been cheated and violated. In theory their activity might have been legal, but it was unjust. Yet there was no way we villagers could have maintained an effective presence at the site gate.

    And then the protectors came. They set up camp on our verges, all kinds of people came from all over. They observed, kept records, helped us hold the company and the regulators and the council to account. They worked with us. They raised awareness of the issues, slowed down deliveries, and the result was that the oil company had to leave before they had flow-tested, as their planning permission had run out. They have still not flow tested. We are hugely grateful to the protectors. We made lasting friends.

    Fracking has to be fought on all fronts. Too much is at stake (not least climate and the survival of humanity). Those of us who are jointly against this, on the same side, must not fall out. I urge you to rethink this eviction.

    • Katheryn

      The message should be to the people of the parish who elect the councillors, not specifically to the councillors.

      It seems that toes have been trod on, and if a parish council ( maybe at the behest of the people they represent ) want them out, and they refuse, then they will need to be thrown off the land by legal means.

      Some people, it seems, are quite upset that a group of people have occupied their ( council ) land without asking the council first, refuse to leave and then upset the clerk, who is a paid employee of the council, not a councillor.

      No doubt the band of protestors will move somewhere else.


      Kathryn [edited by moderator] – Your Balcombe protests have been not been too successful have they? In fact a complete waste of time. All you have done is caused inconvenience for residents over a longer period of time. You have contributed to additional pollution by delaying operations, slow walking etc. And played a major part in helping O & G Operators obtain anti protest injunctions – well done!

      Cuadrilla have been replaced by Angus – you may find Angus a little more difficult to deal with. Flow testing and flaring coming to your village soon, swampies or no swampies.

      Barnby Moor Parish Council have had enough, they have been intimidated and bullied and reacted accordingly. Well done.

  2. A message to the councillors:

    You will probably be aware that Balcombe is about to be flow tested.

    So, perhaps you would rather not have years of illegal invasion that will make no difference to the end result in your community.

    Allotments seem a much more beneficial option. Lovely vegetables to prepare in your refurbished kitchen and a healthy occupation for the locals. Notts courgettes to replace imports from Spain, reducing transport emissions.

    • Martin, according to the Parish Council the ‘copse’ has not been used for many many years – there are fully grown trees on there. The protectors offered to turn it into allotments when they (eventually) leave. At the very least they will restore it to how it was when they arrived (as protectors did in 2014 at Danesill a couple of miles down the road).
      Protectors also offered (and it was gratefully agreed) that they would do community work in the village for the village.
      Sadly the minutes of the parish council meeting show no record of that lengthy discussion.

  3. Well, now it can be, David.

    Much better solution than an injunction.

    Either way, it is a pointless exercise being conducted by a few who think their “rights” are superior to others. Experienced just the same when I lived in Newbury re the bypass. Was somewhat amusing to start with and then patience wore thin when it became apparent they were not supporting the locals but had their own agendas, which most of the locals disagreed with.

    You might be a little surprised to hear comments I have from people local to this site and what their solution would be. Suffice it to say, lacking support for them.

    Anyway, I thought local councillors were to be respected and supported?

    Cake and eat it?

  4. martin once again you have shown how little you know and how blind you are to an industry that has left a trail of destruction everywhere it has gotten bits in the ground. [Edited by moderator]

  5. Well said Kathryn. I too was at Balcombe for the back end of the campaign and saw the brutal corporate agenda played out through some shocking police activity.
    The locals were very supportive of protectors, that was clear to see. Even though the darkest of days.
    I find the denial of some on here stunning, clearly their whole life seems to have been one big lie. How very sad. No wonder we’re going extinct…..!!

  6. Well Leah, the moral high ground may be comfortable but if you want to examine lies I would suggest you also take a longer look at the history of some posters on this site who are from the antis side of the discussion.

    I have heard exactly the opposite from some Balcombe residents, that the protestors were seen as a pain, who were a magnet to more of the same.

    Taking comfort that many in the silent majority keep silent still doesn’t mean the loud voices remaining have any more morality. Just a justification for mob rule.

    And yet, Balcombe is about to be tested. With, or without, an injunction. But it will be. Sad to yourself, reality however to many.

  7. This is the second time the activists have faced eviction from the area.

    On the first occasion Nottinghamshire County Council secured a possession order on the 15th of June 2018 for land at the junction of A634 and Billy Button Lane, Barnby Moor or “Tinker town” as the activists called the camp.

    The activists moved and set up their present camp just a little bit further down the A634, by doing so , it should have come as no surprise that further eviction action has followed.

  8. The band of NIMBYs, wealthy individuals (dodgy actors and designers that have utilised the tax system, legally, however not morally to their privileged position) (please don’t edit, it’s factually true!) Oh and most notably the lost souls, drawn to the likes of Faslane etc don’t seem to be having much impact. In fact I’d suggest their cause peaked last year and is on a continuous downward spiral, hence the threats against injunctions etc.
    My suggestion to give us peace and give them their moral high compass back is they pack up and move to another country such as China to witness the true cost of solar panels and ‘green’ energy on the environment. Stick up the placards and they’ll be jailed before it hits the morning UK press cycle.
    For us realists that don’t see life through rose tinted glasses we welcome a far stronger hand from the government at local and national level. Anarchy is not in the interest of 99.99999999999999% of the population.
    I’m rather enjoying the way things appear to be moving now and the fact that their leader (Corbyn) has been exposed as not a very patriotic sort of chappie. I can see us having power for the foreseeable future as I always knew would be the case.
    Enjoying a glass of your exclusive wine Kathryn!

    • GBK – they will all be rushing out to buy one of these and rechaging from their PV panels, disconnecting from the grid I hope:

      • Mr Kalashnikov’s company has come a long way. I wonder if they will sell as many of these as they have AK-47s?

  9. It will not stop at just one well. You could find your village will become surrounded by hundreds of wells and several industrial sites will have replaced what used to be farmers fields as a gas field is developed all around you. I believe they would need multiple wells in order to get out the shale gas trapped in the shale rock across the area. Google fracking & health. It’s not good. The ‘protectors’ are simply trying to prevent this industrialisation of the countryside before it’s too late. There are other, clean, renewable energy alternatives.

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