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Construction begins on Lancashire fracking site

Work can now begin in Little Plumpton Credit: PA

Energy firm Cuadrilla say they've started construction work to begin fracking at a site in Lancashire.

Cuadrilla were given permission to frack at the Preston New Road site in Little Plumpton after Communities Secretary Sajid Javid approved the plans in October. That was despite Lancashire County Council refusing the plans on the grounds of noise and traffic.

Campaigners have said the decision made a mockery of local government.

It's thought the initial construction work will take around three months before any fracking can begin.

The start of work on our new shale gas exploration site is an important milestone for Lancashire, bringing new economic growth and jobs for the County. The work will be undertaken to the highest safety and environmental standards. The operations are also underpinned by comprehensive site monitoring programmes undertaken separately by ourselves, regulators and independent academics. Twelve months from now we hope this work will prove the economic viability of this indigenous shale gas resource in Lancashire which will help improve energy security for the nation.

– Francis Egan, CEO, Cuadrilla
There's been huge opposition to plans to frack in Lancashire Credit: ITV Granada

Gillian Wood, from Blackpool, who was at the Preston New Road site today, said: "As someone who lives in the local area, I'm shocked that Cuadrilla has started moving in with their trucks and equipment, especially when two legal challenges still aren't resolved.

"A record number of people objected to the council, and we were listened to when the council decided to not let fracking happen. It's appalling that this is being forced on us, our countryside and our climate, and we won't stand for it."

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Anti-fracking protesters stand firm as police and bailiffs move in to evict them

Credit: ITV News

Police officers and bailiffs have moved in to an anti-fracking site near to Chester to enforce an eviction order issued by the High Court.

Police officers out in force at the Upton anti-fracking camp Credit: ITV News

The site, leased by fracking company IGas Energy, is situated on Duttons Lane, in Upton, Cheshire, and is the longest running anti-fracking camp in the country.

It has been fortified with tunnels, tree houses and a moat.

The move by police and bailiffs comes two months after protesters were ordered to leave so drilling could begin.

The protesters have now locked themselves in tunnels and on high platforms to slow down the eviction process.

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