Thursday, 7 August 2014

This morning...

BREAKING/CURRENT -  PRESS RELEASE 7 August 2014 – 5:05am:

Lancashire Grandmas and Mums Occupy Proposed Fracking Field

At 5am a team of around 25 grandmothers, mothers and others from the Blackpool area set up a protection camp in a field earmarked for development by shale gas industry operators Cuadrilla. Stating that they had over the past three years, tried all lawful methods available to them to stop ‘fracking’ and it was now a matter of necessity.  Cuadrilla has applied for planning permission for access roads on the field off Preston New Road to enable the building of the drilling rig; if Lancashire County Council (LCC) grants permission. 

A few hours later some 5000 objection letters to the planning application were handed into the council offices in Preston by others from the Frack Free Lancashire coalition of local anti-fracking groups. A spokesperson said a further 10,000 would be delivered over the coming weeks.

Today’s action comes exactly one week before another event by national group ‘Reclaim the Power’ who plan to bring over 1000 people to camp somewhere (not yet confirmed) in the Blackpool area in order to support local groups. The Reclaim the Power camp will run 14-20 August, holding workshops and training as well as a day of direct action targeting Cuadrilla and its partners.

A spokesperson from the group said: “There has been massive growth in resistance here in Lancashire as well as across the UK and despite this, our government continues to push for fracking.  We have done our research, spoken to those living in places across the world where fracking has already caused untold harm and come to the conclusion that this is an industry we will not have near our families. We don’t do this lightly, it is an awful thing to have to do but it is now a matter of self-defence.”

When asked how long they intended to stay, the spokesperson said: “We wanted to be sure that whilst LCC considers the Cuadrilla request, that they consider what we want too, as mothers and grandmothers who worry for the safety of the next generations as well as our own. We will have a week to further raise awareness and will be offering tea and cake to visitors as well as a wealth of important and honest information about what living in a shale gas area would be like. Then we will join with the Reclaim the Power camp in their actions. We have no defined end-date and are using a ‘Section 6’ to hold the space we have taken (as security guards have done on behalf of Cuadrilla just a few fields away – setting the precedent) as well as a ‘144 Disclaimer’ to ensure we continue to act within the law.”

Others in the group include those from Garstang Against Fracking, Frack Free Fylde, Fleetwood Folk Say No To Fracking, Residents’ Action on Fylde Fracking, Longridge Against Fracking, Keep East Lancashire Frack Free, Thornton Unites against Fylde Fracking, Frack Free Blackpool, Frack Free Creators – Knitting Nannas Lancashire as well as residents from nearby the proposed site.
Some of those participating had this to say when asked what led them to being a part of this action:

Karen a Fylde resident:
“I was excited by the thought of jobs and prosperity coming to Blackpool until I learned about the short-term nature of shale gas and I came to see we were being sold a con about "lower energy prices", "energy security", "long-term employment". We are being sold a brief boom and bust, with nasty long-term consequences. We need permanent solutions to our energy supply and use, not this get-rich-quick then get-the-hell-out industry.”

Tina of Residents’ Action on Fylde Fracking:
“The shale gas industry and Cuadrilla in particular have not acted honestly in their dealings with our community and are not to be trusted with the health and well-being of our children. We  do not want them here and so are gathering to make sure we are heard and we are calling others to help us amplify this.  As air and water do not recognize county boundaries, the defence is for everybody in the UK.”

Anjie of Fleetwood Folk Say No Fracking:
“This isn’t the wide open planes of anywhere, it’s heavily populated Lancashire; this industry has been banned in many places across the world including Europe – what do they know that our government isn’t listening to?”

Ros of Fleetwood Folk Say No to Fracking:
“I feel very strongly about the health impacts and that they’re wanting to pump toxic chemicals into the earth and bring up radioactive matter. I do not want to live in an industrial wasteland where air and water are at risk.”

Ginette of Fleetwood Folk Say No Fracking:
“I vividly remember the earthquake of 2011 that I thought was an explosion. Since then I have found out the real reason it happened and it needs to be stopped.”

Hilary of Keep East Lancashire Frack Free:
“There’s a lot of reasons to be here and do this. Basically we’ve taken this situation for too long and enough is enough. We need to protect our communities and they are being misled by this industry and the government.”

Janice of Longridge Against Fracking:
“I’d like to quote Socrates: ‘When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the user’ – we’ve seen that happen in the media, from the authorities, from the government and the industry; now our backs are against the wall and we’re claiming self defence.”

Becky of Frack Free Creators – Knitting Nannas Lancashire:
“My family alerted me to the proposed shale industry coming to Blackpool. Having done my own research and attending some public meetings, I feel there are better alternatives for our future.”

Julie of Residents’ Action on Fylde Fracking:
“I learned that 1 well in every 6 fails on installation and that 50% fail in 5 years and over time, all wells fail so I get the distinct feeling that we could be sitting on a time bomb.”

Gayzer of Frack Free Fylde:
“I’ll do what it takes to protect our kids. Ask yourself this question: Can something that turns fresh water into toxic waste be a good thing?”

Cheryl of Fleetwood Folk Say No Fracking:
“I want to see my children and future grandchildren enjoying a safe and clean environment. I feel even more strongly about it as my daughter Mica is also actively involved in researching and opposing this; I am proud of her.”

Mica (Cheryl’s daughter) from Fleetwood:
“I teach English in China and have first-hand  experience of industrialization and the devastating effects it has. I don’t want England to get like China is where you can’t get water from the tap and have to buy bottled water.”

Bex of Fleetwood Folk Say No Fracking:
“I grew up here on the Fylde Coast, my children grew up here and no-one is listening – I need my grandchildren to now be able to grow up in a clean, safe environment. This is my oblication as a grandmother.”

Mark of Garstang Against Fracking:
“Nobody asked our opinion on this industry. Councillors and Government are acting without the consensus of the groundswell of public opinion here Lancashire.”


Sunday, 3 August 2014

Fylde Council (dangerous) Farce

- hugely insightful on the workings (manipulations too) of Fylde Council - a body which I now loathe from the deepest pit of my loathing (save those wise Councillors who stood for the people they are meant to represent). 
eg from the article linked above:
"We noted with interest that the distribution of papers omitted any of the Conservative members, suggesting they already had a copy of what Cllr Goodrich had said, and giving us cause to believe that he was speaking on a matter which had already been debated and decided behind closed doors in a Conservative Group meeting prior to the Council meeting, and he was simply the parrot.  "

How do these people sleep at night? How did these people and others in politics like them - get where they are and manage to steal our rights from us?

I thought recently about the snowballing of anti-fracking groups across the country that has happened in just 3 years and wondered if each of the 250+ groups could equate to a Parish Council (not that I know much on this)... and wouldn't it be an idea (once we stop the frackers and have our time back to call our own) - if we, as determined activists/Protectors, ran for these roles so that each community would actually be represented (at least at the most local level), by those who actually give a damn and do something about community safety, preservation, quality of life etc. (and maybe unite when it proves a good strategy).

The 'system' as it stands, serves lobbyists and industry - as far as I can see, it DOES NOT in any way put 'we the people' first; fracking is a huge and obvious symptom of this problem... but you can see it too in banking bail-outs (where is the PEOPLE BAIL-OUT?), the push at privatisation of OUR NHS, the involvement in wars we oppose, the manufacture of arms for sale to those we don't trust, ridiculous investments we can all see through that are sold as beneficial to communities ...but we all KNOW are just about profit for a minority.

Fracking has the focus because it is a clear and present threat - it HASN'T happened at full scale production yet and we have EVERY chance of stopping it before it does... if only we keep growing and supporting each other. But what fracking has done too though, is expose the disregard by the 'system' and its lack of concern or consideration for what WE the people need and would choose.
Only WE can change this stuff and it starts with the success of halting fracking because we can and because it's necessary.

"There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part. You can't even passively take part! And you've got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop! And you've got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it — that unless you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!"
Mario Savio

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Fracking Snowballs...

Just three years ago, I recall a handful of of groups in the UK opposing the development of unconventional energy like shale gas through fracking... now though we have snowballed into something quite amazing and growing at a rate of two or more a week. This from a Facebook link by Britain & Ireland Frack Free - BIFF:

@June 2014 - 212 Groups and counting, new ones being added daily.

BIFF!  ;o)

Frack Off (UK):

Fracking Hell (UK) is a busy Fb discussion Group:

Anti-fracking Network Fb Group:

Fracking Nightmare Fb Group:

Frack Free Families Fb Group:

Druids Against Fracking Fb Group:

The Warrior's Call - pagans united against fracking

No Fracking UK Fb Page:

Conservatives Against Fracking Fb Group

Expats support Anti-Fracking in the UK Fb Group:

Gardeners Against Fracking Forever. G.A.F.F. Fb Group:

Businesses Against Fracking Website:




The Battle for Crawberry Hill Fb Group:

Hull & East Yorkshire Against Fracking Fb Group:

East Yorkshire Frack Free Fb Page:

Crawberry Hill Community Protection Camp Fb Page:

Frack Free (S. Yorks)

Frack Free North Yorkshire
 Fb Page:
West Yorkshire is NOT for Shale Fb Group:
Keep your fracking hands off Calderdale (West Yorks) Fb Group:

Frack Free York - Our Clean Energy Future Fb Group:

Frack Free Harrogate and Knaresborough Fb Group:

Frack Free Leeds Fb Page:

Frack Free Scarborough Fb Group:

Frack Free Hebden Bridge Fb Page:

Frack Free Doncaster Fb Page:


REAF - Ribble Estuary Against Fracking

RAFF - Residents Against Fylde Fracking

Frack Free Fylde Website:

Frack Free Lancashire Fb Page:

Frack Free Blackpool Fb Page:

Keep East Lancashire Frack Free KELFF Fb Group:

Frack Free Pendle Fb Page:

Bowland Fracking Forum Fb Group:

Refracktion Website:

Frack Off Rossendale Fb Page:

Garstang Against Fracking Fb Page:

Longridge Against Fracking Fb Page:

Frack Free Burnley Fb Page:

Lancaster Against Fracking Fb Group:

Lancaster Fights Fracking Fb Group:

Bury Against Fracking Fb Group:

Fleetwood Folk Say No Fracking (FFS No Fracking) Fb Group:

Hyndburn anti fracking group Fb Group:

Ramsbottom Against fracking Fb Page:

Preston New Road (Westby with Plumpton) Against Fracking Fb Group:

TUFF Thornton Unites Against Fylde Fracking: Fb Group:


Daveyhulme and Trafford Frack Free Fb Group:

Daveyhulme Community Protection Camp Fb Group:

Barton Moss Community Protection Camp Fb Page:

Say No to Fracking on Barton Moss Fb Group:

Barton Moss and Beyond Fb Group:

Frack Free Greater Manchester Website:

Frack Free Salford & Manchester Fb Page:

IGas Barton Moss Drilling Site Fb Page:

Bolton Against Fracking Fb Page:

Frack Free Chorlton Fb Page:

Keep the Fracking Hell out of Rochdale Fb Group:

Frack Free Wigan, Leigh and Makerfield Fb Group:

Irlam and Cadishead Frack Free Fb Group:

Barton Moss Community Protection Camp Wishlist Fb Page:

Frack Free Stockport Fb Page:

Frack Free Tameside

Frack Free Walkden Website:

Frack Free Levenshulme Fb Group:


Frack Free Sussex  Fb Page:

Keep Kirdford and Wisborough ‘Green'.  No Drilling Fb Page:

Frack Free Balcombe Website:

Balcombe and beyond Fb Group:

Gas Drilling in Balcombe Website:

Worthing Against Fracking Fb Group:

Chichester Anti-fracking Forum Fb Group:

Frack Free Horsham and District Fb Group:

Horsham Against Fracking Fb Page:

Brighton Action Against Fracking Fb Page:

Gasfield Free Sussex Fb Page:

Frack Free FRow (Forest Row) Fb Page:

Frack Free Billingshurst Fb Page:

Frack Free Arun Fb Page:

Frack Free Markwells Wood (near Havant - Hampshire border) Fb Group:

SEER - Sussex Extreme Energy Resistance:

Wealden Against Fracking Fb Page:

Frack Free Sussex Food Alliance Fb Page:

Frack Free Mayfield and Five Ashes Website:

Henfield debates Fracking Fb Page:

Hastings & Rother says NO to fracking Fb Group:


Frack Free Nottinghamshire

Bassetlaw Against Fracking Fb Group:

Daneshill Community Protection Camp Website:


Frack Free Somerset Website:

Get the Frack out of The Mendips Fb Page:

Gas Field Free Mendip

Frack Free Chew Valley (Somerset) Fb Page:

FAB - Fracking Awareness Backwell (Somerset) Fb Page:

Frack Free Bristol Fb Page:

Frack Free Yeovil and surrounding areas Fb Page:

Bruton Gasfield Free Community Fb Page:


Frack Free Dorset

Protect Swanage and the Isle of Purbeck Website:

Protect our Purbecks  Fb Group:

No Fracking in East Kent Fb Page:

No Fracking in Shepherdswell Fb Page:

Frack Free Darenth Valley Fb Page:

Frack Free Sandwich Fb Page:


Frack Free Farndon (West Cheshire and Chester) Fb Group:

Frack Free Upton (Chester) Fb Group:

Frack Free East Cheshire Fb Page:

Frack Free Dee Fb Group:

Frack Free Deeside Fb Page:

Anti Fracking Warrington Fb Group:

Frack Free Mickle Trafford (Chester) Fb Group:

Frack Free Malpas Fb Page:

Congleton and Macclesfield Against Fracking Fb Group:

I'm Against Fracking at Ince Marshes Fb Group:

Cheshire and Wirral Action on Fracking - CAWAF  Fb Page:


Frack Off London Fb Page:

Frack Free North West Fb Page:

FRACK OFF! North West against fracking Fb Group:

The Entire North of England Unite Against Fracking Fb Page:

No Fracking in Scotland and the North of England Fb Group:

North East Extreme Energy Awareness Fb Group:

Sussex hampshire awareness fracking trust (ed) S.H.A.F.T. (ed) Fb Group:

Say no to fracking Shrewsbury,Oswestry,Wrexham and Chester Fb Page: 

Shropshire Anti-Fracking - Expect Resistance (SAFER) - Frack Off! Fb Group:

Frack Free Derbyshire Fb Page:

Frack Free Glossop Fb Page:

Frack Free Lincolnshire Fb Group:

Frack Free Tyne & Wear  Fb Group (Closed Group - ask to join).

Frack Free Cleveland Fb Group (Closed)

No3Nooks Gas (Staffordshire) Fb Page:

Tamworth Against Fracking (Staffordshire) Fb Page:

Ban Fracking in Herefordshire Fb Page:

Gasfield Free Birmingham Fb Page:

Gas Free Stoke Fb Group:

Gasfield Free Leamington Fb Page:

Frack Free East Anglia Fb Group:

Oxon Against Fracking Fb Page:

Frack Free Surrey Fb Page:

Solent Fracking Awareness (Hampshire) Fb Group:

Southampton Fracking Awareness Fb Group:

Frack Free Devon Fb Group:

KWIFF - Keep Wiltshire Frack Free Fb Group:

Frack Free Five Valleys (Gloucestershire) Fb Page:

Frack Free East Anglia Fb Page:

Gasfield Free Rugby Fb Page:

Say No to Fracking in North Shropshire Fb Group:

Frack Free Gainsborough  Fb Group:

Frack Free Wantage and Grove Oxfordshire

Fb Page:

Frack Free Leicestershire Fb Group:


Frack Free Wales:

Anti-fracking West and Mid-Wales Fb Group:

Say No to Fracking in South Wales Fb Page:

N.E. Wales Anti-Fracking Network Fb Page:

Frack Off Llanelli Fb Group:

The Vale says NO! (Glamorgan) Fb Page:

Frack Free Newport Fb Page:

Frack (UCG) Free Swansea Fb Group:

S.A.F.E. Swansea Against Fracked Energy FB Page:

Llantrithyd Villagers Against FrackingFb Page:

Frack Free Llantrisant
Keep your Fracking hands off Neath Port Talbot Fb Group:

Cardiff Against Fracking Everywhere CAFE Fb Page:


NO FRACKING IRELAND FB Group (Avoid the FB Page by the same name).

Fracking Free Ireland Website:

North West Network Against Fracking (Ireland)  Fb Page:

No Fracking Northern Ireland FB Page:

Ban Fracking Northern Ireland Twitter:

Ballinlea Residents Group / Protect our North Coast (Antrim) Website:

Rathlin Bay Residents Say no to Fracking (Antrim) Website:

No Fracking Sligo Fb Page:

No Fracking Leitrim FB Group:

No Fracking Tyrone FB Group:

Stop Fracking Fermanagh Fb Page:

Fermanagh Fracking Awareness Network (FFAN) Website:

Carrick Against Fracking Fb Page:

Belfast not for $hale Website:

Frack Free Kerry Fb Page:

Fracking Fee Clare Fb Page:

Ballymoney Against Fracking Fb Group:

Ballymoney - counsel against Fracking Fb Group:


Frack Off Scotland FB Page:

Frack Off Scotland FB Group

Frack Free Forth Valley Fb Page:

FAUG - Forth valley Against Unconventional Gas

Frack Off Glasgow Fb Group:

Frack Off Peeblesshire Fb Group:

Fracking Ban Scotland Fb Group:

No to fracking in Scotland  Fb Page: