Fracking is ‘threat to property prices’

Test site for fracking

A keep out sign

First published in News by , Business editor

A CAMPAIGNER said it was “idiotic” to suggest drilling for gas in the South Downs National Park would not deflate house prices.

Industrial drilling in the Weald would increase traffic, deter visitors and reduce the quality of life, John Buchanan of Frack Free Fernhurst has warned.

The Valuation Office Agency, which values properties for council tax, has admitted commercial activities such as fracking could cause house pricing estimates to be downgraded.

The rural village of Fernhurst is subject to a fiercely contested planning application by Celtique Energie to test drill for shale gas.

Mr Buchanan said: “The difficulty with this business is it involves a great deal of traffic and will require multiple sites across the Weald.

“Its idiotic to assume the threat of such activity is not going to have an effect on house prices. Anyone who says otherwise is fibbing.”

Mr Buchanan said the case of an elderly lady recently run over and killed by a lorry in Midhurst was an example of the clash of heavy vehicles and rural life.

He said: “It makes your blood run cold to think of the hundreds of more lorries that would be in the area.

“It’s an industrial activity. The truth is its going to degrade all of our amenity.

“We’re in a national park but nobody will want to cycle along our roads because they will be competing with dirty great lorries.”

Backers of drilling say it will revolutionise Britain’s energy needs but opponents say all the accessible gas in the Weald would only be a two-week supply.

Chris Hebert, of Hamptons estate agency in nearby Haslemere, said: “If someone’s got something going on 24/7, people will not buy their house.”

Ken Cronin, chief executive of UK Onshore Oil and Gas, said: “Oil and gas has been extracted in the UK for over 150 years, with over 2,000 wells drilled and 200 of these hydraulically fractured.

“These wells are sited in many different areas of the country from areas of outstanding natural beauty, council estates and golf courses with no evidence of house price impacts.”

Comments (6)

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1:18pm Wed 27 Aug 14

Nosfaratu says...

'NOT IN MY BACK YARD' ! - John Buchanan of Frack Free Fernhurst , you are all that is wrong with land/property owners in Sussex, selfish to the point that you would see the economy of the Country fail just so you don't lose a couple of quid on the value of your property.
'NOT IN MY BACK YARD' ! - John Buchanan of Frack Free Fernhurst , you are all that is wrong with land/property owners in Sussex, selfish to the point that you would see the economy of the Country fail just so you don't lose a couple of quid on the value of your property. Nosfaratu
  • Score: 3

1:42pm Wed 27 Aug 14

Fairfax Aches says...

there we have the NIMBY cartel's POV in a nutshell. Its enough to make one want to become a communist.
there we have the NIMBY cartel's POV in a nutshell. Its enough to make one want to become a communist. Fairfax Aches
  • Score: -5

2:43pm Wed 27 Aug 14

skylight says...

You do not need to be an expert to see the obvious, which is that the continued exploration for gas & the fracking method will undobtedly impact on property values. The resultant publicity alone will see to that.

It is one to accuse others of nimbyism, but would you chose to buy a house in Mid Sussex?

The article only states what is the plain truth.
You do not need to be an expert to see the obvious, which is that the continued exploration for gas & the fracking method will undobtedly impact on property values. The resultant publicity alone will see to that. It is one to accuse others of nimbyism, but would you chose to buy a house in Mid Sussex? The article only states what is the plain truth. skylight
  • Score: -4

3:31pm Wed 27 Aug 14

s&k says...

Nevermind property prices, will it impact on people's health?
Nevermind property prices, will it impact on people's health? s&k
  • Score: -2

5:00pm Wed 27 Aug 14

Tyndall'sArmy says...

Why was my comment deleted? Was it the usual lot who'd rather vote me down than deal with any of the points I've raised?
Every time you vote me down or get my comment deleted it's yet another admission that I'm right.
Why was my comment deleted? Was it the usual lot who'd rather vote me down than deal with any of the points I've raised? Every time you vote me down or get my comment deleted it's yet another admission that I'm right. Tyndall'sArmy
  • Score: -32

10:02pm Wed 27 Aug 14

HJarrs says...

House prices are the least of our worries, it is the expansion of exploitable fossil fuel reserves that is the problem.
House prices are the least of our worries, it is the expansion of exploitable fossil fuel reserves that is the problem. HJarrs
  • Score: 0
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