Pledge from fracking firm
I would like to take this opportunity to respond to Peter Ward (Letters, December 31) regarding shale gas exploration.
Detailed environmental impact assessments have been undertaken by expert engineers ARUP to identify and address the impacts of our two planned exploration sites in Fylde.
To address Mr Ward’s points about countryside amenity and traffic, ARUP identified limited and temporary visual impacts around the sites whilst the drilling rig is on site and assessed the impact of additional traffic generated by each site as “not significant”.
We have listened to feedback, from the local community and environmental and conservation groups such as the Lancashire branch of the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England, since announcing our sites at Roseacre Wood and Preston New Road last February.
We are committed to reducing visual impact including the use of earth bunds and planting around our sites. We have assessed the merits of other suggestions, including the idea that we might excavate holes to bury the rigs to reduce the visual impact further.
As this would entail a lot more heavy goods vehicles) movements to remove the large additional quantity of earth which would be moved away from and back to the site, and a vastly greater environmental impact than our current proposals, we are not minded to take this suggestion further.
Mr Ward also makes several comments about the transport routes for our proposed new sites.
Following community feedback, we are working closely with the MOD regarding access over DHFCS Inskip for the Rosecare Wood site, with the intention that we would use an internal road within the base allowing HGVs from our operations to avoid passing through the village of Wharles.
Due to further evaluation of the fracturing process we have been able to reduce the overall volume of fluid we will need and as a result this will mean a reduction in the number of HGVs required for our operations.
We will also establish a traffic management plan for both our sites. The plan would include signage to the site and the utilisation of best practice measures to reduce dust and mud on the roads.
We would also carry out a survey of the existing condition of the roads, and we shall put right any limited wear and tear that may happen during our operations.
We are grateful to local people and organisations who have worked with us on these and other aspects of our proposals, and we shall continue to carefully listen to community views as we progress.
Francis Egan, chief executive Cuadrilla
On the road to polling day
Many of your readers will be familiar with the Conservative campaigning poster, showing a straight road stretching far ahead and disappearing into the distance.
It invites us to stay on said highway and enjoy a stronger economic recovery, masterminded, as you might reasonably anticipate, by the Boys in Blue!
The road, so dramatically depicted, is wide and smooth and totally devoid of any directional signs, arrows, or warnings of possible dangers ahead.
The Tarmacadam is in perfect condition and remains so as it stretches towards infinity and beyond into Cloud Cuckoo Land!
My first,and only question to the Prime Minister and his colleague, the National Book Keeper is, where was the picture of the road taken?
On thing is certain... it wasn’t anywhere in rural England where, in many places, the state of our roads is bordering on the criminally dangerous. Happy New Tyres to all your readers!
Festive season’s meaning lost
I’m glad Christmas is over, and no, that doesn’t make me a “Scrooge” or a “Bah Humbug” merchant.
I’m just someone who chooses not to indulge in what has become a two-month-long gluttony of mass consumerism and tacky marketing of what are increasingly known as “The Holidays”, thanks to seemingly all-engulfing American popular culture.
It seems that calling it Christmas might lead to those of other religions feeling offended or, God forbid, excluded!
One of the reasons I don’t really “do Christmas” is that I have no religious faith and it is, like it or not, a religious festival. Though having said that, Christianity hijacked what was a long pre-existing mid-winter festival observed by many pagan sects.
Religions, generally, are very effective at repurposing existing celebrations to their own end. Now it seems the tables have turned, as capitalists repurpose religious festivals to their own profits.
Then again, if Christmas was restricted to regular church-going committed Christians, it would be a much more discreet affair. I don’t shun it – I like turkey and stuffing as much as the next man, I give gifts to loved ones and receive some too, though it’s out of societal convention rather than religious conviction. But I do heave a huge sigh of relief when it’s all over. Huge, but shortlived.
Because I have already seen marketing for the next consumerism opportunity, Valentine’s Day, more than six weeks before the event, and then it will be Easter eggs everywhere you look.
Name and address suppliedd
Memories from a city ‘ex-pat
My father, T W Croft, is pictured on his own converted motor bike to run on a daily-charged battery because of the shortage of fuel to get him to work (see photo above).
The picture is from Garstang Road, in Fulwood, and Sharoe Green Post Office would be a little to the left of the picture and opposite would be where I used to live, known as Graigenich, the only corner house to Green Drive and the brook which runs beneath Garstang Road.
You will notice opposite a pill box and maybe two more behind on the pavement. I do not remember the pill boxes. In 1947 I remember a few houses were being built down a newly laid street slightly further up.
Mr P Croft, Emsworth, Hampshire