Lancashire Police arrest four after frack site protests

Anti-fracking protesters stop a truck at Preston New Road
Anti-fracking protesters stop a truck at Preston New Road

Trucks were stopped from getting to a Fylde fracking drill site when four protesters chained themselves together blocking the entrance.

The four, including representatives from the Kirby Misperton fracking protest site in Yorkshire, lay down across the access road at around 7.30am.

Police were called and the four were warned that under the public order act they should leave by 9.15am.

But they remained in place and along with other protesters prevented trucks entering the site where Cuadrilla’s workers are preparing a drill pad for test fracking later this year.

Lancashire Police said four were arrested for a breach of a public order at around 1pm.

Local protesters who have been maintaining a vigil opposite the site said while the protesters were from outside the area, they were welcome as long as they were lawful and peaceful.

We support any action that is peaceful and lawful

Sue Marshall, from St Annes, said: “I am here to support the protest and I am very grateful these people have come to help us. We have to stop fracking. It is a toxic industry being forced upon our community. In Kirby Misperton they will be testing the sites for radioactive radon gas, they will not be doing that here because they say it is too expensive.”

Claire Stephenson, from the Preston New Road Action Group, said: “When you have a company and industry that is not wanted and has gone against local democracy it is no surprise that some people would take action like this.

“We support any action that is peaceful and lawful.”

One of the protesters chained together, Eddie Thornton from Yorkshire, said: “We want to inspire other people to get creative to stop this industry. We are showing support to Lancashire, where the people have said no to fracking and they mean no.”

Cuadrilla did not want to comment as it was a police matter but a spokesman said while they were disappointed by the action by people mainly from outside the area, it did not prevent work being carried out on site.