Gas firm golf in club bid

Knott End Golf Club

Knott End Golf Club

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AN energy company is bidding to buy part of a golf club under its controversial plans to store gas under the Wyre estuary.

Members of Knott End Golf Club will consider three options from Halite Energy at a meeting on Monday.

It is understood the first would see the sale of 2.5 acres of land to Halite for a wellhead for £40,000.

The second option would see 4.15 acres of land go to Halite for a wellhead and surrounding area for £75,000 and a third option would see 4.5 acres of land for a wellhead and surrounding area being leased to Halite for 50 years for £3,000 per year.

Halite plans to use 19 hollowed out salt caverns for the storage of up to 900 million cubic metres of natural gas.

The company, yesterday, submitted a planning application for its scheme to the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC).

The IPC – set up in 2009 to take the decision process on national energy projects away from local authorities – now has 28 days to decide whether or not to accept or reject Halite’s application.

If it is accepted the proposal will then be considered by IPC commissioners and members of the public can, at this stage, submit written representations.

After this process a recommendation is made to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change.

Previous applications for gas storage in Over Wyre – by US firm Canatxx – were turned down after fierce public opposition.

Coun Peter Gibson, leader of Wyre Council and a member of the golf club, said several questions would have to be answered before members could vote on the release of land.

He said: “First of all if the land is sold, what will the revenue gained be spent on and what will the land be used for.

“At the moment it’s agricultural land which is nice to look at, if Halite do purchase it, what will be on there and what will it look like.

“Members will also want to know how much vehicular movement there will be as the only way to access the land is down Hackensall Road which is residential.”

A spokesman for Halite said it could not comment on details relating to Knott End Golf Club while its application was with the IPC.

She added: “Details relating to land ownership form part of the application and will be subject to consideration.”