Blackpool MP demands answers after visiting residents alarmed by fracking tremors

Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden has written to the Oil and Gas Authority to demand answers over the fracking tremors.

MP Gordon Marsden with householder Amanda Bennett who was alarmed by the recent fracking tremor and believes it may have caused damage to her home
MP Gordon Marsden with householder Amanda Bennett who was alarmed by the recent fracking tremor and believes it may have caused damage to her home

The Labour MP has been contacted by residents who say their homes were rocked by the quake on Bank Holiday Monday linked to shale gas firm’s fracking at its Preston New Road site.

Gordon is now following up a letter he sent to the Government’s Environment Secretary by writing to the industry regulator asking for a clear timetable for the investigation into the tremors.

And he highlighted some of the experiences local residents felt from the tremors.

MP Gordon Marsden with resident Elva Knott following the fracking tremors

He said: “They all explained what they felt and they are understandably very concerned about them and the fear of more.

“When I was at Preston New Road on Saturday to give my continued opposition to fracking, it is clear, local people want an immediate and permanent ban on fracking. We need a full independent investigation into what happened with a reasonable timescale – that’s why I have written to the Government and Oil and Gas authority with those demands.

"This mess has been caused by Tory Ministers who rode roughshod over Lancashire County Council to allow fracking in the first place. If they don’t end fracking now, no ifs, no buts, the next Labour Government will.”

He met Elva Knott of Moss House Road. She said “We’ve had a few earth tremors over the years I have lived here but none were accompanied by the explosive bang I heard that morning.

“I was just sitting on the sofa when it happened – it didn’t last for long but it was disturbing experience. I’m worried because the site is only a few miles from a built up area – if these tremors carry on and get bigger they could end up doing a lot of damage.”

Amanda Bennett, who lives on Redwood Boulevard and only moved in April, said: “I was just making breakfast and watching TV when I heard this really loud rumble - it felt like it was coming from underneath the surface.

“It was big enough to make the wardrobe doors fly open and put some cracks in the wall. My two dogs Freddy and Bertie came rushing up the stairs and started to panic as well. I didn’t really think about the fracking but then I saw everyone talking about it on social media and saying similar.”

Gordon also visited David Squires at his house on Hawes Side Lane. The property is more than a hundred years old.

He said: “I was sitting in my chair in the front room and it was as if the chair just lifted. A noise from the windows then followed. I have never experienced anything like it.

“I wasn’t really for or against fracking before but when it starts to cause unnatural things like these tremors I think it needs to stop.”