Green MEP to headline Warnham debate on fracking tonight

MEP Keith Taylor (right) getting parents to sign a petition to lower the speed limit to 20mph, outside Haddenham Jnr School

MEP Keith Taylor (right) getting parents to sign a petition to lower the speed limit to 20mph, outside Haddenham Jnr School

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Members of the public are invited to join Green MEP Keith Taylor and others to debate the potential risks fracking poses to the environment at a meeting in Warnham Village Hall tonight(Friday October 18).

Mid Sussex, Crawley and Horsham Green Party have promoted this meeting - to start at 7.30pm - and invited residents and candidates in the Warnham and Rusper West Sussex County Council by-election.

Balcombe in Mid Sussex has been the focus for campaigners protesting against hydraulic fracturing, a process where water and chemicals are pumped underground at high pressure to split apart porous shale rock to release oil or gas.

However Celtique Energie are looking to secure planning permission for a site between Kirdford and Wisborough Green for exploratory drilling for conventional deposits.

The company has said it will also be looking for shale deposits, and kept open the possibility of fracking in the area if data comes back positive.

Meanwhile villagers from both Kirdford and Wisborough Green will descend on a potential exploratory drilling site between the two settlements on Sunday October 20 at 11.45am.

According to campaigners Walk the Route is being organised to raise the awareness of the site, off Kirdford Road, and to substantiate their belief that the site is not suitable for the proposals Celtique Energie wish to implement.

A spokesperson for the group said: “If their application is approved it will mean this area will change beyond recognition and the way of life will never be the same for these communities.

“We want to protect the interests of the community, who for centuries have relied on the many rural activities in the vicinity, and to stop the disruption of heavy transportation driving through our villages 24 hours every day seven days a week.”

People are invited to bring their family, friends, and dogs for a beautiful autumnal walk, past the ancient woodland of Northup Copse and the 17th-century Boxall Bridge.

The meeting point for both groups will be outside the respective churches.