Fracking in S18?


Coal Aston, Dronfield and the surrounding areas are part of the PEDL300 licence area (see right), sold to INEOS, who are currently trying to find the best place (most profitable or productive) to start fracking from.

They do this by carrying out surveys using vibrations sent deep into the rock to form a picture of the rock layers below. These are called Seismic surveys.


After the seismic testing has been done, INEOS will move to the next phase – drill site acquisition



This is the point that the Marsh Lane community on and around Bramley Moor Lane are currently at – the site being considered is shown on the image to the right, within the central blue box.

To do exploratory drilling, INEOS need to set up a drilling rig. The following information is taken from their application to Derbyshire County Council for the site at Bramley Moor Lane, so this is the best you can expect. In previous drills they have worked outside stated times.

There are 5 stages to this phase.

Stage 1 – Site development and establishment

This takes approximately 3 months

7am to 7pm, 12 hours a day Monday to Friday and 7am to 1pm 6 hours a day Saturday

  • The site will be around 100 x 100 metres (120 x 120 yards) or 2 football pitches
  • It will be surrounded by 2 metre (over 6 feet) high screening
  • There will be portakabins stacked 2 high, so not hidden by screening
  • Water will be shipped in with tankers and waste water will be removed the same way

Stage 2 – Drilling and coring

This takes approximately 3 months

Drilling will be ongoing for 24 hours a day (Click HERE to listen)

Mobilisation, demobilisation and routine deliveries 7am to 7pm, 12 hours a day Monday to Friday and 7am to 1pm 6 hours a day Saturday

  • They will erect 9 metre (30 foot) high towers for lighting
  • The drilling rig will be 60 metres (200 feet) high
  • Click HERE to listen – remember this will be 24/7 for 3 months with no volume control

Stage 3 – Establishment as Listening Well and Suspension

Activities to suspend the well (once the rig is removed from site) and maintenance visits would take place 7am to 7pm, 12 hours a day Monday to Friday and 7am to 1pm 6 hours a day Saturday

A flange and well monitoring pressure gauge would be fitted to the well and it would be sealed using a wellhead ‘Christmas Tree’, or wireline blow out preventer

Constant visits to check:

  • Integrity of pipework and site surface
  • Integrity of fencing and security arrangements;
  • Site drainage and containment, including tanks;
  • Wellhead structure and pressure monitoring.

CCTV only monitoring

Stage 4 – Undertaking Listening Well Operation

If other wells are drilled, this will be continue to be used as a listening well to collect data.

Stage 5 Abandonment and Restoration

Any potentially contaminated equipment would be removed from the site (this acknowledges a potential for contamination)

There are additional stages after this point – you can read more about them here:

Coal Aston and Dronfield against Fracking and Eckington against Fracking are trying to stop the process before it gets to the drilling and extraction phase. Please come along to a meeting and see what you can do to help.