A planning application to carry out hydrocarbon (oil and gas) exploration and appraisal at an existing site south of Balcombe, Mid Sussex, will be considered at a planning committee in January. The meeting, at County Hall, Chichester, will be held at 10.30 am on Tuesday 9 January 2018.
Drilling in 2013
The drilling of a vertical and lateral (horizontal) well was undertaken at the site over summer 2013 under a planning permission granted in 2010. That permission also allowed appraisal, including flow testing and monitoring activities, and flaring, to be undertaken but it expired in September 2013 before the applicant had time to complete the appraisal operations. A temporary, six month planning permission was subsequently granted in 2014 for the monitoring and appraisal works, but that permission lapsed in May 2017 before being implemented.
Two year permission for exploration
The current application is for a temporary, two year permission for exploration and appraisal comprising the flow testing and monitoring of the existing hydrocarbon lateral borehole along with site security fencing, the provision of an enclosed testing flare and site restoration.
Because of the high level of public interest in this application, attendance at the Planning Committee meeting will be via allocated ticket. There is a maximum of 80 seats available in the public gallery. Places for tickets will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.
To apply for a ticket to the meeting, please send a request with your contact details to Democratic.Services@westsussex.gov.uk
The meeting will be webcast live (http://www.westsussex.public-i.tv/core/portal/home ), and the webcast will be available for a period of six months after the event.
The agenda and reports for the meeting can be found on the County Council website www.westsussex.gov.uk by searching for ‘Planning Committee’.