Wrexham anti-fracking campaigners given midnight deadline to clear protest camp

21st Nov 2014

Anti- fracking campaigners in Wrexham have until midnight tonight to leave a protest camp.

It comes after a failed courtroom bid today to stop bailiffs evicting them.

The protesters have not yet revealed whether they will comply with the order to hand back the land to the farmers who own it or resist the bailiffs.

Last month, protesters set up the Borras Community Protection Camp at Commonwood Farm, Wrexham to campaign against plans by GP Energy to explore the extraction of gas there.

Several weeks on and the small scale camp has been turned into a mini-community complete with a watchtower, shower, extended kitchen with food stocks, a caravan rest area, tepee play area for children and toilets.

Today’s Manchester High Court case involved an application on behalf of father and son landowners Terence Andrew Jones and Terence Neal Jones against persons unknown to take possession of the land where test drilling for gas is planneded.

The landowners were represented by a Queens’s Counsel barrister.

Marc Jones, of Frack Free Wrexham group, said the judge granted the “persons unknown” permission to stay at the site until 11.59pm on Friday when their camp must be cleared.

If the campers are not gone by the deadline then bailiffs can move in over the weekend.

Mr Jones said: “The option is to leave the site or stay there.”

Protesters against underground test drilling for gas had said they have been overwhelmed by the support they have received.

One of the protesters Chrissy, who did not wish to give her second name, said the level of support from the local community had been great.

She has said: “We have had so much support it has been overwhelming. The people around here are so much more clued up about what is going on and want to get involved.

“In other areas where we have been protesting and organised a public meeting, usually you get 20 people attending, 30 would be considered good.

“But when we had the first meeting at the Cunliffe Arms here, we had 150 people which was fantastic.

“People have been dropping off all kinds of supplies for us, from food to wood to build our shelters and burn for heat. We asked for one fire extinguisher and got 10. It’s amazing how quick this camp has built up.”

The camp was set up after Wrexham Council’s decision to refuse proposals to drill for underground gas there, was overturned.

Underground gas drilling has been shrouded in controversy across the world.