Fracking cash appeal

Ben Wallace MP
Ben Wallace MP
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A WYRE MP has met Government officials to campaign for potential revenues from shale gas extraction to be given to community projects locally.

Ben Wallace MP, who represents Wyre and Preston North in Parliament, held the meeting at the Treasury in Westminster on Wednesday.

Mr Wallace, who described discussions as “productive”, told The Gazette after the meeting: “The real point is to get an acceptance in principle that these shale gas revenues should go to communities in Lancashire, and they be used for the long term benefit of these communities so they can share in what is a national strategic asset.

“If this shale gas happens, and there’s lots of barriers to get through and it may not be what’s right, but it’s important we’re prepared in case it does.

“The worst thing would be if it did go ahead and we got nothing.”

Mr Wallace also held talks with the lead shale gas official at the Department of Energy on Monday, when he discussed likely outcomes of the current test drilling across various parts of Lancashire, including in Wyre.

Mr Wallace added: “There has been much talk about the hundreds of billions of pounds worth of gas under Lancashire and I am keen that if fracking goes ahead Lancashire get a good deal.

“There are potentially billions of pounds at stake for the county and I want to ensure my constituents directly benefit from any future cash.

“Shale gas exploration could unlock a total regeneration of the county and I am determined to ensure the revenues don’t disappear into the treasury.”

Cuadrilla Resources is currently looking at sites in Singleton, Weeton and Westby as it bids to find natural gas stored in shale rock deep underground.

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