Lee Rowley, Member of Parliament for North East Derbyshire, has criticised a fracking company for removing local decision-making from an application to drill locally at Marsh Lane.
Ineos, the company who have applied for exploratory drilling in land adjacent to Bramleymoor Lane near Marsh Lane, have asked the national Planning Inspectorate to intervene in their application, to by-pass a decision to be made by Derbyshire County Council.
The ultimate decision will now be taken out of local hands, despite a long and extensive local consultation period, and, as a result of Ineos’s decisions, the process will likely be made significantly more complicated for local residents.
Lee Rowley commented: “I am extremely disappointed with Ineos for appealing to the Planning Inspectorate.
“The application for exploratory drilling is incredibly complex and could have enormous long-term implications for North Derbyshire and local residents. More time was needed for Derbyshire County Council to understand all aspects of the application and to work through all of the representations received.
“Over 5,000 consultation responses have been received in one of the largest community engagement projects our area has ever seen. This decision should have been made locally.”
A number of residents have been in touch with Lee to share his disappointment and ask about the next steps of the appeals process.
Lee said: “With the Inspectorate now involved, the planning process is likely to become more complicated in the next few months. Even though the ultimate decision will now be taken in Bristol rather than Matlock, the important thing is to still try to prioritise local residents having their say.
“The initial public consultation stage is now open for people to submit their written objections to the Bramleymoor proposal at the appeal stage. For any residents who didn’t comment on the original planning application or if there are any extra issues they’d like to raise or comment on, please get your representations in before the deadline on 17th January 2018.
“There is a lot of information out there and it’s easy to get confused, so I’ve written a guide to the current situation on my website for residents to read. We’ll keep residents updated as the process continues and will continue to work to stop fracking in North East Derbyshire.”
Lee’s guide can be viewed here: https://leerowleymp.wordpress.com/