Anti-fracking campaigners visit Downing Street with festive treats and letter

The Argus: Anti-fracking campaigners visit Downing Street with festive treats and letter Anti-fracking campaigners visit Downing Street with festive treats and letter

Anti-fracking campaigners hand-delivered a letter to the Prime Minister before singing Christmas carols with a difference outside Number Ten.

About 25 residents of Balcombe made the trip to London on Friday to show their opposition to the controversial process of extracting shale gas from beneath of earth's surface.

Children from the Mid Sussex village made solar panel decorations for David Cameron's Christmas tree, sang anti-fracking carols outside the gates to Downing Street and delivered a letter explaining why they opposed fracking.

Campaigner Charles Metcalfe, of Frack Free Balcombe Residents Association (FFBRA), said the letter called for an “immediate and binding UK-wide moratorium on shale gas, coal bed methane and underground coal gasification on our islands”.

It read: 'We come with gifts, as is appropriate so close to Christmas, of decorations made by Balcombe children. It is their futures that are under threat. “Do you want to be remembered as the Government that turned this country from a 'green and pleasant land' into countryside pockmarked with thousands of well-pads?

“Do you wish to criminalise your natural and law-abiding supporters in rural communities by obliging them to protest and demonstrate to defend their precious environment against marauding oil and gas companies?

“Are these the actions of 'the greenest government ever'?”

Balcombe is at the centre of plans to begin fracking in the UK, which involves blasting water and sand at high pressure deep underground to cause mini-explosions.

This in turn releases shale gas, which is then harvested for use.

Cuadrilla, the company which had been test drilling for shale gas at in Balcombe over the summer despite a series of high-profile protests, recently announced the discovery of hydrocarbons and oil in its rock samples.

Mr Metcalfe said only six of his party were allowed to the doorstep of Number Ten but he hoped the letter, which also claimed fracking releases neurotoxins in gas flows, causes skin diseases, earthquakes and poisons livestock and water supplies, would leave its mark.

He added: “We delivered the letter and the man simply said 'thank you.'

“We at FFBRA have no plans for another visit, yet. But I believe there are more visits planned in the New Year by other groups opposed to shale gas exploitation.”

Comments (6)

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7:14pm Sun 22 Dec 13

LeonBIank666 says...

Wish they would all just frack off and get a job instead of protesting about something they know absolutely nothing about,
Wish they would all just frack off and get a job instead of protesting about something they know absolutely nothing about, LeonBIank666

10:52pm Sun 22 Dec 13

Fragmentsofred says...

Thank you! this is so incredibly important and I have no doubt that this is just the first of many, many such letters as those who really love their children, their families, friends, animals, wildlife and their green open spaces will NEVER give up the fight to save them. You can't switch off caring!
Thank you! this is so incredibly important and I have no doubt that this is just the first of many, many such letters as those who really love their children, their families, friends, animals, wildlife and their green open spaces will NEVER give up the fight to save them. You can't switch off caring! Fragmentsofred

11:04pm Sun 22 Dec 13

greeg2 says...

"Unemployable skunk smokers try and wast Downing street's time."
There we go,that's the real headline.
"Unemployable skunk smokers try and wast Downing street's time." There we go,that's the real headline. greeg2

9:55am Mon 23 Dec 13

Nikski says...

LeonBIank666 wrote:
Wish they would all just frack off and get a job instead of protesting about something they know absolutely nothing about,
Read this and be afraid, be very afraid.....

http://www.theguardi
an.com/environment/2
013/dec/14/fracking-
hell-live-next-shale
-gas-well-texas-us

I have no doubt you would be more than happy to live in Ponder, Texas (or perhaps ) Balcombe

You are obviously an expert on fracking!
[quote][p][bold]LeonBIank666[/bold] wrote: Wish they would all just frack off and get a job instead of protesting about something they know absolutely nothing about,[/p][/quote]Read this and be afraid, be very afraid..... http://www.theguardi an.com/environment/2 013/dec/14/fracking- hell-live-next-shale -gas-well-texas-us I have no doubt you would be more than happy to live in Ponder, Texas (or perhaps ) Balcombe You are obviously an expert on fracking! Nikski

7:38pm Mon 23 Dec 13

B Chudrun says...

The way people assume they know who is in employment...or cant imagine that some of us, who protest (and have taken the time to study 'fracking') run our own businesses, so we can decide our times to work and time to protest.... Those of us who work in the £8bn/annum Sussex rural tourism industry have every reason to protest - fracking is a direct threat to our businesses.. Many small local businesses are sustainable (unlike fracking), the jobs require local skills and knowledge..and benefit the environment... Tourism is said to be the future bedrock of British GDP - do people seriously think we should let the oil and gas companies frack that too?
The way people assume they know who is in employment...or cant imagine that some of us, who protest (and have taken the time to study 'fracking') run our own businesses, so we can decide our times to work and time to protest.... Those of us who work in the £8bn/annum Sussex rural tourism industry have every reason to protest - fracking is a direct threat to our businesses.. Many small local businesses are sustainable (unlike fracking), the jobs require local skills and knowledge..and benefit the environment... Tourism is said to be the future bedrock of British GDP - do people seriously think we should let the oil and gas companies frack that too? B Chudrun

10:20pm Mon 23 Dec 13

M....... says...

Most of those who oppose fracking are much better informed than those who just shout "ya, boo" at the protesters and then dismiss them as anti-socials. That just saves them having to think about the issues and having to inform themselves.

The more people who understand what fracking entails, the more people there are who oppose it.

The others will realise it ten years down the line when it's too late to undo the colossal rural damage.

Regards, M.....
Most of those who oppose fracking are much better informed than those who just shout "ya, boo" at the protesters and then dismiss them as anti-socials. That just saves them having to think about the issues and having to inform themselves. The more people who understand what fracking entails, the more people there are who oppose it. The others will realise it ten years down the line when it's too late to undo the colossal rural damage. Regards, M..... M.......

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