Councillor Seeks Villagers' Views on Fracking Plans

A local Councillor has launched a survey to gather local views on fracking in villages close to a site recently put forward by the shale gas company INEOS.

Alex Dale, a local Conservative district Councillor, who is also standing for County Council in this May's elections, is surveying residents in villages such as Apperknowle, the Handleys, Hundall and Unstone on plans from INEOS Upstream Ltd for exploratory drilling at Bramleymoor Lane.

If approved and shale gas is found, it is likely to be followed by several applications for fracking wells across the rural area between Dronfield and Eckington.

The survey invites residents to state whether they are for or against the proposals, and detail any concerns or comments they may have. Cllr Dale has pledged to submit the results to the County Council, which will have the ultimate say on whether fracking can go ahead locally.

Commenting, Cllr Dale said: "Like many residents, I have very serious concerns over the impact of fracking on our quality of life and our beautiful rural countryside surroundings.

"If fracking is approved in this area, it is likely to have wide ranging implications on our communities, not just Marsh Lane and Eckington but also Apperknowle, the Handleys and Unstone where I am proud to serve as a Parish Councillor. Even residents in Coal Aston and Dronfield have very real fears over what fracking could mean for them, particularly with regard to the safety of the process and the likely increase in HGV traffic on our roads.

"As a Councillor, ensuring that local residents have a voice in the planning process has always been one of my key priorities. It's important that communities have an easy and accessible means of putting their views forward and that's where I hope my survey comes in. I am out on the doorsteps in the villages closest to the site but I invite any residents in the surrounding area to take part."

The survey can be completed below.

Alternatively, readers can contact Cllr Dale directly to request a paper copy at

Pictured: Alex Dale close to the proposed exploratory drilling site on Bramleymoor Lane, as well as a map detailing the proposed exploratory drilling site.