April 4, 2022 1.00 pm

Residents’ “unacceptable anxiety” over repeated Wolds oil drill extensions

Plans were turned down in March

Councillors will say repeated applications to extend the dates for an oil drill near North Kelsey caused “unacceptable anxiety” when they confirm refusal of the plans next week.

Lincolnshire County Council’s Planning and Regulations Committee next Monday will be asked to confirm their reasons for voting against Egdon Resource’s application in March to amend the date by which restoration of the sites needs to be completed and vary the direction of drilling.

Egdon had said its exploratory drilling could provide valuable indigenous oil reserves for the country, however, campaigners fighting the plans said it would cause major harm to the area and its wildlife.

“Representations from the local community have made it clear that the delay and prolonging the uncertainty with each extension of time has caused unacceptable levels of anxiety to local residents which has been exacerbated through the repeated extensions of time sought by the applicant,” said a report to councillors.

“The anxiety of local residents from these delays and repeated applications creates unacceptable adverse impacts to residents’ amenity”

Campaigners from SoS North Kelsey are fighting plans to drill in the county. | Photo: Supplied

Egdon first gained permission to explore in the area in 2014 and has since made several applications to extend the period and some of the conditions.

The firm blamed a number of reasons, including most recently the COVID pandemic, and also said local oil would be needed more due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

In their report, officers noted that since planning permission was granted “sufficient work” had been undertaken to implement the original permission, however, they said the repeated extensions of time had only exacerbated residents’ concerns.

At the same meeting on Monday, councillors will also be asked to refuse an application for security cabins on the site because officers said there was “no need”.

“To permit the security cabins to be situated in this location without connection to a mineral operation would be contrary to the principle of development in the open countryside and be visually intrusive.”