Pictures: Eviction of protest camp at Horse Hill oil site


Eviction at Horse Hill, Surrey, 10 September 2018. Photo: Copyright Ivan Tucker

Security guards and specialist rescue staff worked through the night to remove campaigners from a protest camp near the Horse Hill oil exploration site in Surrey.

Two people locked themselves together in a wooden structure on private land next to the site.

The operation lasted more than 12 hours and ended just after 3am today. Surrey Police confirmed there were no arrests.

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The eviction was ordered by the Horse Hill site operator, HHDL, on behalf of the private landowner.

It was carried out under common law, by Able Enforcement, a Bristol-based company, which was involved in earlier camp evictions at Horse Hill and Leith Hill.

A team from the specialist search and rescue company, SGI, based in Dorking, was called. Steve Wood, of Able Enforcement, said this was because it has concerns that the wooden structure could collapse.

Mr Wood said it took about five-and-a-half hours to secure the structure and another seven hours to remove the lock on, which weighed more than 100lb. He said:

“It was the best lock-on I have ever seen”.


Lock-on device used at Horse Hill, 10 September 2018. Photo: Copyright Ivan Tucker

One of the people involved in the lock-on said they experienced discomfort during the eviction operation and two others experienced pain. They were treated at the protection camp.

A spokesperson for Surrey Police said:

“This was a private eviction. Police officers were attendance to prevent a breach of the police. No arrests were made.”

The eviction was livestreamed by the anti-drilling campaigners and followed on social media. DrillOrDrop understands a complaint have been made to police about the content of some social media posts. A spokesperson for Surrey Police

Under common law, landowners can ask people to leave their land. If they refuse, the landowner can remove them “using no more force than is reasonably necessary.”

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Flow testing of the well at the Horse Hill site is currently underway. Yesterday, the site’s major partner, UK Oil & Gas plc, said results from the Portland rock formation flow test had “exceeded expectations”. DrillOrDrop report

22 replies »

  1. No arrests despite trespass, clear breach of peace and breaking an injunction? Slightly odd.

    Despite that, this is yet another PR gaff for the anti-establishment mob.

      • Nope. Deliberate mass tresspass and I dare say some criminal damage having likely occurred would make this a prime case for police involvement. Likewise the peace being breached. Likewise the injunction being breached should result in committal (could yet happen).

    • Shame the usual suspectsa weren’t banged up, and arn’t being perused for every penny of the costs of removing their sorry arses.

  2. Should of got water canons to evict then .They could have done with a good shower .Have you seen all there rubbish they have left .Hope they get charge for the removal of there s-it

  3. Specialist Group International, the so called “rescuers” (who have no powers of arrest) carried handcuffs which they attached without warning and were then used to lower one victem to the ground.

    There were allegations of strangulation by the security guards against protectors who comitted no crime, were themselves non-violent, and obstructed nothing to do with UKOG.

    [edited by moderator]


    It will be interesting to see if these [edited by moderator] avoid prosecution.

      • Straight question, please give a straight answer;

        Do you you honestly believe that the Kimmeridge is a conventional resource?

        • It’s naturally fractured, previously flowed with no fracking, is too shallow to be fracked, hasn’t been fracked and is not planned to be fracked.

          UKOG is not a fracking company no matter how desperate you, and other deliberately misleading protestors, are for people to believe otherwise.

          • The question was
            “Do you honestly believe that the Kimmeridge is a conventional resource?”

            I’m looking for a straight answer to that specific question please.


              unconventional resource
              English | Español

              1. n. [Geology, Shale Gas]
              An umbrella term for oil and natural gas that is produced by means that do not meet the criteria for conventional production. What has qualified as unconventional at any particular time is a complex function of resource characteristics, the available exploration and production technologies, the economic environment, and the scale, frequency and duration of production from the resource. Perceptions of these factors inevitably change over time and often differ among users of the term. At present, the term is used in reference to oil and gas resources whose porosity, permeability, fluid trapping mechanism, or other characteristics differ from conventional sandstone and carbonate reservoirs. Coalbed methane, gas hydrates, shale gas, fractured reservoirs, and tight gas sands are considered unconventional resources.
              See: gas hydrate, heavy oil, shale gas, shale oil, tight gas, tight oil

              According to Schlumberger the Kimmeridge is unconventional (in the UKOG area but not in Dorset). However naturally fractured reservoirs produce “conventionally” without stimulation. All very confusing.

              Have a look at Hurricane Energy, West of Shetland:


              Or fractured basement reservoirs in Vietnam.

              All producing at very good rates without stimulation from natural fractures. No doubt there are many more fields like these in the world. But are these “unconventional”? By Schlumberger’s definition, yes.

              But why is this an issue?

            • OK ‘R8 LMX’ I see you aren’t going to answer the question directly.

              Your response parrots the false dichotomy that the Weald penny share oil companies try so hard to establish, i.e. they are “conventional oil companies”/ they are not fracking as part of their exploration THEREFORE the Kimmeridge must be a conventional resource.

              I haven’t claimed that they are fracking but I can tell you unambiguously that the Kimmeridge Clay Formation is an unconventional resource, which means there is certainly no “pool” of oil that stretches across the Weald, and that if it comes to a production phase, recovering oil from any part of it that isn’t drilled in a fault damage zone (aka “naturally fractured”) WILL require stimulation and back to back wells.

              Much of posting below the line on DoD attempts to muddy the waters on this subject using red herrings and ad hominem attacks, if anyone is genuinely interested in this go to the Government and industry studies where this all quite clear. If you are an investor, you really should read up on this too, the spin that comes out of the industry will I believe land them in hot water one day but you are the ones being taken to the cleaners.

              A good start would be this from Department of Energy and Climate Change;

              Click to access bgs_decc_jurassicwealdshale_study_2014_main_report.pdf


              “..this report is the second to address the potential distribution and in-place resources of unconventional oil and gas contained in shales beneath the UK.”

              “3.6.6 Kimmeridge Clay Formation These low porosity and low permeability micrites may be targets in a hybrid Bakken-type shale play, with shale units above and below.”

              “Shale oil (this report). Oil occurs in liquid form in largely impermeable lithologies. These can be shale, but also adjacent siltstone, sandstone, limestone. Oil is extracted by horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing.”

              Oops, back to fracking again.

              Other methods of stimulation can of course be used if it’s legally or political expedient, they don’t need to fracture the rock, with acid they can dissolve it. The risk to water and level of industrialisation through are similar or worse which is why it makes no difference to anti-fracking campaigners who generally believe this to be a gateway to fracking, as used in the Bakken.

  4. Lovely straight answer there R8.

    Of course, all that should be known to anyone who does their research, but there are some who can’t be bothered, and there are some who can but want to tell untruths to others. Building on sand, comes to mind.

    Perhaps an anti could answer a straight question? What happened to the local support? (This seems to be about number 5 or 6 in recent days of locals indicating they want rid of the protestors.)

  5. Dorkinian-you ask a subjective question and get a straight forward answer. Keep trying to produce fog but it will get nowhere.

    You will just find that “conventional” is defined by each individual situation, so every well drilled could be defined as different to others. That’s why experts are employed to do it, rather than others who don’t understand the subject but want to utilise that lack of understanding to confuse others. It seems that is a valid use of one’s time these days. Sad really.

  6. Meanwhile-the reality!

    “Exxon Mobil is considering investing at least £500 million in upgrading Britain’s biggest oil refinery to produce more diesel that meets UK standards.” The Times-12/09/18.

    Perhaps the experts know a little more than some would pretend?


    SOS in Germany. Perhaps the Horse Hill swampies shoulde head over to Germany and help their comrades? Afterall lignite has a much higher carbon footprint….

    “Dozens of protesters have occupied 60 treehouses, some as high as 25 metres off the ground, since 2012 in an attempt to protect the ancient Hambach forest from being felled to make way for the expansion of an open-pit coalmine.

    Until now their presence had been quietly tolerated, but police moved in after local authorities ordered that the forest be cleared immediately, citing fire hazards.”

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