Anti-fracking protesters say they are determined to delay the arrival of the main drilling rig at Cuadrilla’s shale gas site on the Fylde.
More than 100 people gathered at the Preston New Road site on Friday to support protesters who had built two towers out of pallets overnight to blockade the entrance to the site.
Four people also locked themselves together across the entrance. Meanwhile at the Marriott Drilling Group in Chesterfield protesters halted a four lorry convoy of what they claimed were parts of the main drilling rig bound for the Fylde site.
Police blocked off the Eastbound lane of the A583 and set up a contra-flow traffic light system while they worked to cut free the locked on protesters.
Tina Rothery from the Lancashire Nanas group said: “Those who oppose shale gas drilling continue to show resilience. We have been here since January and will continue as long as it takes. Cuadrilla were hoping to get the drill in the ground in March, it is now July.”
Independent Fylde councillor Roger Lloyd said: “Today has been very well supported. The people who have been protesting her since January have done so peacefully and without violence and should be commended. Fracking is a crime against the environment.”
But Cuadrilla said today that work had gone ahead as normal on site and pro-fracking group Lancashire For Shale said the protests blocked the roads and were costing the tax-payer.
A spokesman from Lancashire For Shale said: “All of these actions will be to the detriment of the Lancashire taxpayer, who will eventually have to bear the cost, including the cost of bailiffs to evict the protesters from trespassing on the Council’s own land.
“This is yet another attempt by a bunch of professional protesters to intimidate and harass people who are legally going about their business.”