Oil company reveals plans for new Surrey well site


UK Oil & Gas plc has given details of a proposed new well site in Surrey.

The company, which is the major investor at the Horse Hill oil site in the county, said it was preparing to apply for planning permission for exploration at Dunsfold, a small village, just over 8 miles south of Guildford.

In a letter to residents, UKOG said it wanted to drill and test a hydrocarbon well, to be called Dunsfold-1. If the well were successful, UKOG said it would drill and test a sidetrack, Dunsfold-1Z.

190215 UKOG Dunsfold plans

The proposed well site is north east of Dunsfold, the company said, but there are no further details of the exact location. Villagers have since said the site is locally-known as Pratt’s Corner.

1902 Dunsfold Surrey

Local people have posted this map online with the proposed location marked by the red circle.

The company said:

“The surface location is very much governed by the subsurface extend of the potential hydrocarbon resource, although other considerations, such as proximity to a good highway network, distance from residential properties, ecology and visual impacts are all taken fully into account.”

The wellsite is in UKOG’s licence PEDL234, which also includes Broadford Bridge, near Billingshurst in West Sussex. That well was suspended in March 2018. Part of the reservoir had been described by UKOG as “unproductive because of low permeability”.

UKOG said in its letter

“massive hydraulic fracturing (commonly known as “fracking”) is NOT required and will NOT form part of this project.”

On the site location, UKOG said:

“Following a detailed review and assessment of the licence area, including a review of drilling and testing of the exploratory well Broadford Bridge-1/1z in 32017-2018, UKOG has identified a potential hydrocarbon resource to the northeast of Dunsfold.”

North east of Dunsfold is Dunsfold Park, a former wartime Aerodrome, which had been earmarked for a 2,500-home eco village. This project was refused planning permission and dismissed on appeal. At the time, the Secretary of State said the development would generate a considerable amount of additional road traffic and would have a severe and unacceptable impact on an overstretched local road network.

A revised scheme for 1,800 homes was approved by the government in March 2018.

UKOG said it had held discussions with Surrey County Council about the “scope and range of environmental impact assessments that would be needed to support the future planning application for the well site. It added:

“Further environmental assessment work is underway, including ecology, hydrogeology, noise, transport and landscape and visual impact”.

A public meeting about the proposal is on Wednesday 27th February from 3pm-7pm, at The Winn Hall, Dunsfold Common Road, Dunsfold GU8 4AJ.

An updated document from the Oil & Gas Authority on company work programmes showed that UKOG had committed to drill three wells in PEDL234 by 2021.

The first, is a commitment to drill and test an exploration well through the Kimmeridge limestones on trend with the Godley Bridge 1 Portland gas discovery by 31 December 2019.

The company has also agreed to drill a further exploration well in the licence area through the Kimmeridge Limestones by 31 December 2020 and an appraisal well or side track by 31 December 2021.

Updated 19/2/2019 to include map posted by villagers of the proposed site and to add approval of revised housing scheme

34 replies »

  1. South of Guidford? Well you have got to admire UKOG’s b(@)lls, you will soon be able to see them hanging on The Guildford Spike!

    • Well good morning ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, and speaking of which i hope you all had a good day on Friday telling the government you were missing lessons to teach them one.
      Well done all of you.

      Its the seventeenth Frack free Sunday since fracking was supposed to have produced all that natural gas, but only appears to have made a brief flash in the pan, allegedly with propane from a tank. All stopped because Cuadrilla could not continue at full pressure for fear of causing more and greater earthquakes and totally discrediting the entire process of fracking forever.

      So, since then there has been almost frantic attempts to inflate the 0.5RS TLS limit that they themselves agreed to years ago, to something they could deal with, and rants from Jim Ratcliffe, and a group of cobbled together bought and paid for scientists who wrote a letter but the three who prepared the original press conference did not sign, which is odd at the very least.

      No doubt there is a lot of pressure being brought to bear on government and the institutions to overturn the TLS limits.

      All of that would frankly reduce those much vaunted, but essentially ineffective gold standards to a laughing stock, not that they are not all ready a laughing stock.

      There are old standards, and there are bold standards, there are gold standards and there are bought and sold standards, but when there are only bought and sold sold standards, then there are no old, bold, gold standards.

      And then the children themselves, horrified by this governments lack of action on addressing the climate change issue went on strike on Friday 15th February to emulate and support Greta Thunberg and her friends in Sweden who has done this every Friday and who was fined and moved over the bridge out of sight of the pathetic Swedish government because they are embarrassed by being shown up so easily by a 15 year old girl. You have to be concerned about governments who act so scared of the children of their own country dont you.

      Then here even Claire Perry said on interview with George, a 13 year old who was protesting, that if she was fourty years younger, she would be striking too. Just remember it will be Claire Perry and James Brokenshire, never was there a more appropriate name, that would have the decision to overturn the TLS limits.

      So with Jim Ratcliffe and his pet 48 pack of scientists desperately trying to overturn the rules and move the goal posts, there are many other forces at work at the same time.

      This is a photo of the 48 pack scientists cobbling together from scrap, a new TLS capable of changing its own lights from red to green, and shooting any messenger that attempts to deliver change it, as usual it is a somewhat myopic, if not mono optic approach and apparently has an odd habit of saying with an odd metallic voice: “expatriate” “manipulate!” “irradiate!” “depopulate!” “circumnavigate!” “regurgitate!”

      Have a good frack free Sunday with family and friends and maybe we are seeing the last gasps of the dreadful fracking industry in this country.

      “iNCORPORATE!” Oh dear its off again…..

  2. I recall UKOG referenced a while ago they were in the process of identifying two further sites to enable further exploration in addition to HH and Broadford Bridge, whilst Markwells Wood would no longer be required. Looks as if the data from those two is being put to use to identify best subsequent sites. The meeting on the 27th might shed some light on that.

    • Do you mean the Markwells Wood licence that was refused access ? No longer required is what UKOG said , we know the truth. Im sure the meeting will be lively , its already being organised I hear.

    • Yeah… ECONOMY ECONOMY ECONOMY ECONOMY ECONOMY MONEY MONEY MONEY MONEY!!!!! MORE STUFF AND THEN MORE STUFF AND THEN MORE STUFF!!!! Lets just make the whole of the UK into one big well pad. Who needs green spaces when you can have oil and MONEY!!!!!!

  3. The ambition of the planet-eaters is relentless, despite their ambition being responsible for the future growing impoverishment and starvation of their very own customer base.
    On a day when the kids are on strike to demand a climate emergency;
    on a week when yet another report shows US fracking to have never made a profit;
    on a month when the rate ice melt at both ends of the planet is increasing faster than previously thought;
    on a month when multiple reports show genocidal rates of species extermination,
    how can it be acceptable that these planet-eaters get to propose anything at all?

    • Well put Mark, these plans are in line with government energy strategy but a child could tell you this is not an acceptable response to existential climate crisis.

      • But, quite a few adults in France, will tell you something else, Dorkinian.

        So, if you put aside the entrenched, and hijacked, positions of both groups and look at the situation logically and with an open mind, oil from Surrey/Sussex processed at Fawley Refinery is an improvement on US oil processed at Fawley Refinery with respect to climate change. Small steps, but very much in line with the UN report.

  4. You are reading the wrong reports Mark!

    On the day which shows the USA is now pumping more oil from Texas than ever before, thanks to fracking, surpassing its peak from the 1970s, with the Permain on course to overtake the largest oilfield in the world, the Ghawar field in Saudi Arabia, within three years.

    Texas added 27,000 new oil and natural gas jobs last year. And all so profitable, Big Oil is buying back in rapidly and extensively. And, if you would like to look at INEOS web site you will see the huge re-investment into the chemicals business this is allowing within the USA with modern plants many times more environmentally friendly than the ones being replaced.

    So, little old UKOG, if successful will perhaps cut out some of the oil from Texas being fracked and shipped to UK. Where does the largest volume of UK imported oil now come from? Oh, USA.

    Probably not anywhere near the 4m barrels per day for UKOG under the Weald, but every little bit helps to reduce emissions generated from what is being used within the UK but shipped in from far away.

    • “Probably not anywhere near the 4m barrels per day for UKOG under the Weald, but every little bit helps to reduce emissions ….” and not so long ago you were making excuses for inaction on further UK climate mitigation because China, India (and the US) dwarf our emissions!?

      Of course the corporations concerned want to paint over the cracks (pun intended) on their websites for investors and big banks.

      I’m afraid the only action we should be concerning ourselves with is killing the onshore fracking industry and focusing the VAT and tax breaks on home energy efficiency and renewables which will create many more long term, sustainable jobs. Most importantly this will reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and the big energy companies driving people to fuel poverty. The point is to reduce the need for both imports and local onshore fossil fuel extraction.

      The Economist says the US fracking industry cares less about returns, more about gullible investors and big bank loans:

      The Wall Street Journal seems to think there’s a problem here as well:

      “energy companies [since 2007] have spent $280 billion more than they generated from operations on shale investments.”

      Problems with rapidly declining rates of return on wells:

      And another dose of disaster capitalism for short-term, short-sighted money grabbing:

      The prospect for UK fracking is much worse, way more expensive to perform, with far less returns and worst of all, an industrialised, polluted British countryside to make any slim commercial returns viable.

      Despite your belief in a minority conspiracy theory on climate change for the benefit of the minority neoliberal elites at The Global Warming Policy Foundation, this is a global climate emergency requiring global emergency action.

      • But, the Weald will not be fracking, so your rant is a bit misplaced. UK Weald oil would, possibly, replace US oil from fracking. Not difficult to understand. An environmental improvement that would continue to be valid as long as oil is imported into the UK. Looking at antis trundling around the British countryside in their 3litre diesels, that will be for some time to come.

        But, in terms of elsewhere in the UK where fracking is being tested, your “prospects” are yet to be determined. And, of course you shoot yourself in the foot, because if the prospects prove as uneconomic as you speculate there will be no industry! But, thanks for exposing your concern. A trap the antis can not resist. There must be some magical attractant applied to it.

        • MC, for someone belching so much hot air and criticising people for generating fog and confusion, you’ve certainly created quite a lot of your own. I never said the Weald will be fracked, I was referring to emissions from fossil fuels that you brought up in reference to the Weald. Your reading comprehension is very poor and then go on to put words in people’s mouths!

          But yes, there will eventually be no industry, but not before it industrialises and pollutes the countryside unnecessarily as this onshore, fossil fuel heavy industry does, (note I said fossil fuel industry not just fracking, in case you don’t comprehend?) if allowed to continue.

          Of course until we get electric vehicles sourcing power from renewables, there isn’t much choice is there? However, I did see The Big Lemon Buses from Brighton powered by solar from their depot, as well as those on recycled and filtered cooking oil, transport protectors to various sites, so there is the way forward and something to expand upon.

          No trap nor shooting myself in the foot, you’re just doing it to yourself.

          • “killing the onshore fracking industry”, D!!!!! And that was your only action!


            Some of us can read. If you are changing shifts, better to make sure you leave notes for each other or else there is a risk you seem to contradict “yourself”.

            By the way-there is a choice. Hydrogen. Vehicles already exist, all we need is the infrastructure and a source for the hydrogen. Ohh, we have one of those as well-its called fossil fuel.

            The emissions I was referring to reference the Weald, was the REDUCTION in emissions compared to maritime transport of oil from thousands of miles away.

            Gatwick a little busy this last weekend? Fawley Refinery needing to pump some more aviation fuel? Wonder where that oil came from?

            But interesting that you are in favour of vast tracts of monoculture to provide the cooking oil to run buses! Very eco friendly-not.

            I would prefer diversity of wildlife and nice clean hydrogen derived from fossil fuel.

            Perhaps you should be relabelled-Destroy Insects?

            • MC you really do come out with lots of nonsense. Your pretence at your concern for climate and environment has been very contradictory for all to see, except maybe you, it seems? I was making the point of your supposed concern over REDUCING emissions from small beer in the Weald, when previously u said the UK’s contribution didn’t matter because of larger polluting countries.

              I never said I was in favour of vast tracks of monoculture, though u imply u are in favour of our current intensive farming industry of monocultures, when dismissing agroecology as “twaddle”. You really can’t help yourself interpreting what people say incorrectly can you? Note, I said RECYCLED cooking oil, collected from sources that had already used it, so not contributing to vast monocultures MCfly!

              I think we would be much better off without fossil fuels and going straight to Passivhaus and EnerPHIT retrofit standards, topped up with electrified transport from renewable energy. Far better to have wildlife friendly solar farms than the heavy polluting fracking industry all over the countryside.

  5. You are reading the wrong reports Mark!

    See P32 todays Times, regarding “Frackers make Texas capital of big oil.”
    And, you can check on INEOS web site to see what that is enabling in turn with modernisation of the US chemicals industry where new environmentally superior factories are replacing older polluting ones.

    USA currently largest imported oil supplier to UK. Maybe the Weald will replace some of that, as Wytch Farm already does. All of benefit environmentally.

    “Alternatively”, you could stand outside Gatwick Airport and tell the increasing numbers of passengers that you would rather they didn’t go on holiday.

      • You call that an investigation, Jono??

        So, geoscientists do work around geoscience!! Shock/horror.

        Who should? Baristas?

        I have never seen such a contrived and edited piece of twaddle dressed up as an investigation. They couldn’t even get the content to conform to their own preview of the piece.

        Do you know what is even more interesting? If a group of individuals wants to change the dimensions of a football goal they might have some specialist knowledge on the subject and been involved in the football industry for a little while.

        Green spaces, One? Was this area being looked at for 2500 houses? Have a word with the locals around Wytch Farm. They will tell you which they would prefer.

        • Moving goalposts is a very good way to describe oil & gas industry , the difference is that football goalpiosts aren’t moved for personal financial gain .

          • Really, Jono?

            You don’t know much about the economics of the football industry then!

            How much did you just gain financially, or otherwise, from tapping upon your plastic keyboard?

            I suppose the wind farm that has just opened was all for charity? Someone will be gaining a pretty good return looking at the subsidy we will ALL be paying. £500m/year! Hornsea One price guarantee is now about £155 per MWh!! But not to worry, the Danes need the money more than our people do. And so do the Americans, and the Norwegians etc. etc.

            I could find many better things to do with £500m/year, and I am sure you could as well.

            But Hornsea One is alternative financial gain, so that is okay then.

  6. Sorry, Mark, I had a glitch on my plastic keyboard, and needed to repeat-so, you have ended up with a double dose.

  7. Martin…. it’s all about the here and now with you… see my reply to your other planet eater “free”(not so free) as a bird? Hmmmm… interesting, birds, when we have ripped the the last tree down to make way for yet another well pad, how many birds will be left and moreover, will they be free?

    If you keep perpetuating the need nothing changes. We have aquired some great minds who focus on the wider picture other than ripping the arse out of the plannets finite resources. These people need to be recognised as forward thinking and responsible human beings who put the health and well-being of the planet above greed of others.

    • One-ripping down trees?? What, to enable some more wind turbines to be installed to mince the birds? Oops.

      Lots of birds around Wytch Farm-so where do you gain your experience from? I recall Ruth posting about a visit to a UKOG site with buzzards and butterflies mentioned in her text. Still there.

      Or, how about solar farms and trees? Or trees chopped down to feed polluting wood burners so a few can pontificate about their reduction in use of gas? Or vast forests chopped down so wood pellets can be burned in barns in N.Ireland because the more you burned the more you got? Or other vast forests chopped down to burn at Drax? Or huge swathes of land to grow cereals to produce biodiesel?

      Forward thinking? You are having a chuckle.

      “All about the here and now”. Hmmm. Like a farmer I know who absolutely hated the thought of wind turbines on his land until he sussed he could earn £150k each per year, whether they generated, or not. Then it was a case of how many.

      I am not perpetuating the need. I recognise what is todays reality and the way we can take todays reality and mitigate within that. If I use oil and gas I am interested in where that comes from and the pros and cons of one source against another. The same with the food I eat.

      I do quite like marine wind farms, if they are placed correctly, and priced correctly. If neither is done then, to me, that is not forward thinking but a waste of money. With £500m per year it would not take long to convert all diesel trains to hydrogen which would also prevent the need to electrify all but main lines. Once that was underway it would be a small step to start to roll out hydrogen to trucks and vans.

      Maybe some great minds should focus more upon that reality. But, it may take a while before they can get to it as many will have flown off for half term break.

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