Nanas Gain High Profile Support From Michael Mansfield QC
Ahead of a High Court appearance in Manchester that lead to a temporary injunction on anti-fracking campaigners from occupying a field in Lancashire, the ‘Nanas’ received a message of support from Michael Mansfield QC:
“You have the spirit
You have the courage
You lead the way
We are all guardians of our planet and some of us show the rest that action speaks louder than words.
Before its too late.
You represent the human conscience
And I will sit with you today albeit some distance down the M62 engaged elsewhere!”
Today’s appearance in court saw the Nanas and their Solicitor Simon Pook face a six plus Cuadrilla legal team at the first hearing of the case brought by Cuadrilla and named landowners for possession of the field under consideration for shale gas development and various claims for damages. Simon Pook informed the Judge that the site had already been vacated by the Nanas. Further the Nanas and their legal team required time to assimilate the details of the charges against them. The Judge subsequently decided after much careful deliberation which lasted most of the day, that the Nanas did indeed need more time to look at evidence. Most of it was addressed to persons unknown ranging from people on social media to named groups of unknown persons, meaning THE WORLD!
Documents stated that a total of 10 landowners were seeking injunction and three of them from one family seeking possession against the campaigners, who had vacated the site after the three week occupation. The Judge ruled that only the landowners of the occupied field would be granted a possession order as a matter of formality as the field had already been vacated and a temporary injunction would be in place until the date of the next hearing on October 8th 2014.
Cuadrilla’s other demands were refused due to significant concerns that they disproportionately infringed Human Rights.
Campaigners, primarily consisting of parents and grandparents from Lancashire stated there had been insufficient time to understand the documents as they were served just before the bank holiday. The application in parts was oppressive and infringed significant Human Rights. Campaigners had been camped on a field in Little Plumpton that is currently under planning consideration for development of access roads and a drill pad where energy firm Cuadrilla hopes to exploit shale gas.
A group of fifty supporters gathered outside the Court to cheer on the Nanas.
Julie Daniels one of the ‘Nanas’ and a resident of Blackpool where Cuadrilla aims to extract shale gas said:
“We are happy that the Judge granted the adjournment we requested as it provides the time required to look more closely into the claims made in documents presented to the court. The 10 Claimants turned out to be three families listed individually but from only three addresses, a clear ploy by Cuadrilla’s team to try to make it appear that there was more opposition than really existed.
“We know from visiting neighbours, seeing signs objecting to fracking on so many properties and by the noise from the cars that beeped their horns in support of our action that villagers are deeply distressed about Cuadrilla’s plans. Three weeks of Nanas and tent pegs is a very minor inconvenience especially when compared to what this landowner and Cuadrilla have planned; industrialisation of the fields, constant noise and traffic, illumination, risks to air and water quality, increased seismicity, potential harm to the health of people, pets and livestock nearby and much more.
If Cuadrilla’s applications were to be successful, it would see the Fylde Peninsula host the largest UK fracking tests to date. Each of the sites require 2 years of works, 20,000 truck movements, the use of 9 million gallons of water per well and the production of 5.6 million gallons of radioactive waste.
The applications are on-course for being the most unpopular in British planning history with 14,000 objections already registered with weeks to go until the consultation process ends
Manchester personality Bez with some of the campaigning Nanas
Notes to editor
Lancashire nanas set up camp - http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/aug/15/blackpool-anti-fracking-camp-im-here-for-my-10-grandchildren
Cuadrilla statement on possession order – http://www.itv.com/news/granada/story/2014-08-22/anti-fracking-protesters-face-legal-action/