West Newton A Expansion Guidance

A major oil and gas field is planned for East Yorkshire, with several wellsites and many wells in Holderness, not far from Hull, Beverley, and Hornsea.

A Planning Application has just been submitted for a major expansion of West Newton A wellsite to drill more wells and start producing fossil fuels for decades to come.

A Public Consultation is now open.

Easy Action (5mins)

Submit a one word comment “Object”

The total number of objections matters as it is reported to the Planning Committee. Beginning with the word Object makes it clear whether the comment is for, or against, or neutral.

• Encourage others to object too

Object here

Link to the Planning Application
21/02464/STFUL

> then go to the “Comments” tab

Thorough Action

Submit a comment beginning “Object” and say why

See below for details and guidance.

 

Help Fund Expert Reports

Expert Reports could help block the Planning Application – but cost £thousands.

Our main Expert Report, including a Traffic Report, has now been submitted as an Objection to the Planning Application.  More work is ongoing to supplement this – but there is a shortfall.

 

Donate towards Expert Reports

 

Thank you for any contributions to funding this work.  Although expensive, we believe they will be invaluable.  More donations mean more comprehensive Reports, and more chance of blocking the application.  Read more below…

 

Details & Guidance

Contents

 

Oil & Gas Field Plans

Multiple wellsites and many more wells are planned.

 A  West Newton A Wellsite
Planning Application to expand and drill 6 more wells.
Pipers Lane / Fosham Road, Marton HU11 5DA
HGV route via Hull, New Ellerby & Marton.

 B  West Newton B Wellsite
Drilled in 2020, testing underway.  Plans just discovered to drill 8 new wells.
Crook Lane, West Newton
HGV route via Hull, Bilton, & Sproatley.

 C  &  D  West Newton C & D wellsites
Planned, initial details uncovered 2020.
Land South East Of Smithy Briggs Farm, Crook Lane, Burton Constable HU11 4LW
Land West Of Low Fosham Farm, Low Fosham Road, Aldbrough HU11 4LP

Oil companies will drill as many wells as they can get away with, if there’s a chance to get rich. They want to turn rural East Yorkshire in to an oil & gas field, and already have plans for multiple well sites and many more wells”

 

What is this Planning Application for?

  • to expand West Newton A wellsite from 0.9ha to 3.46ha (8.55 acres), nearly four times the current size
  • 30 HGVs would visit the site each day during 12 weeks of site construction – equivalent to 1 journey leg every 12 minutes for 12 hours
  • A drilling rig up to 55m (180 feet) tall would be used to drill 6 new wells
  • Additional sidetracks could be drilled for all six wells
  • Drilling for a total of 90 weeks, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Wells would be treated with acid before production
  • If wells did not flow, they will be treated with nitrogen gas for 1-5 days
  • Up to 330,000,000 cubic feet of “waste” gas could be burned during well testing
  • Well testing to take 1-2 years
  • to start producing oil
  • to store up to 490 tonnes of crude oil
  • up to 25 oil tankers every day for 20 years of production – equivalent to 1 journey every 14 minutes for 12 hours, including Sundays and bank holidays

West Newton A Wellsite

West Newton A Wellsite was constructed in 2013. Two deep (below 2,000m) oil & gas wells have been drilled to explore for gas and oil. Operator Rathlin Energy now wants to drill 6 more wells, and start producing oil.

Oil would be transported to North Lincolnshire by road tanker, via Hull or Beverley.

For more details about this site, including the Planning history, see:  West Newton A, and there is a Timeline on DrillOrDrop here.

Location

West Newton A Wellsite is located between Hull, Beverley and Hornsea, near Burton Constable Hall, to the north of Sproatley.

Pipers Lane / Fosham Road, Marton HU11 5DA

Click to view an interactive Streetmap.

Previous Incidents

Gas flaring at West Newton A. Noxious gases caused locals to feel sick, and lasted for months.

During testing in 2014 when the site was last active incidents included:

  • an emergency well shutdown, apparently when the planned mini-frac test went wrong. Tests and the lower section of well were abandoned.  See here.
  • 19 breaches of Environment Agency Permit; enforcement action taken.  See here.
  • ongoing gas leaks and noxious smells
  • overflowing drainage ditches and leaky tanks
  • incidents have been catalogued on this Incidents page here

 

What Happens Next?

A Planning Application has been submitted (July 2021) and the Public Consultation is now open – the most important and final opportunity for you to have your say.

Later this year it will go to the Planning Committee of East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC). This is likely to be September to November time.  We’ll update this page when we know.

They will decide whether to Allow or Refuse permission. The public consultation is your chance to convince them.

How to Object

There is general guidance here:

  View and comment on planning applications – ERYC website

Online

You can submit an objection online here:

Link to the Planning Application
21/02464/STFUL

> then go to the “Comments” tab

Note there is a 30 minute timeout on the website, so if composing your comment will take time, type it in a text editor, and then copy & paste it in to the website.

 

Easy Action (5 mins)

Submit a one word comment “Object”

The total number of objections matters as it is reported to the Planning Committee. Beginning with the word Object makes it clear whether the comment is for, or against, or neutral.

  • Encourage others to object too

 

Thorough Action

Submit a comment beginning “Object” and say why

  • Be factual.
  • Comments submitted anonymously or considered to contain libellous, discriminatory, defamatory or offensive remarks will not be counted.
  • Stick to matters relevant to the application, known as Material Considerations.
  • Keep scrolling for more guidance.

 

In Writing

If you are able to submit your comment online, please do so – it makes it easier to process and count your comment.

However, if you find it easier, you can use this easy Written Objection Form:

Easy Written Objection Form with Quick Guidance – Click to download a printable pdf.

A letter in your own words may carry more weight, but the most important thing is that you do object – even just a single word: “Object”.

You must include your details, and the application reference: 21/02464/STFUL

Address your letter to:
East Riding of Yorkshire Council
Planning and Development Management
County Hall
Cross Street
Beverley
HU17 9BA

 

Grounds for Objection & ‘Material Considerations’

Councils can only take in to account matters relevant to the application, know as ‘Material Considerations’.  What count as Material Considerations is ultimately decided by the courts.

More on this shortly, but in the meantime:

See ERYC guidance > Types of comments which are considered.

 

Impacts

Impacts include:

  • Noise and light pollution from the site
  • Vibrations during nearly two years of drilling
  • Traffic: could be 200,000 HGV trips
  • Harmful diesel pollution along the whole route, including through Hull or Beverley
  • Road Safety along the route
  • Gas venting & flaring: all gas found will be treated as waste and flared off
  • Noxious gases & smells (as in 2014, for months – see here)
  • Climate change: the release of methane (an extremely potent greenhouse gas), and carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • The development alone would result in 200,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gas pollution

 

Expert Reports – Comprehensive Objections

Independent planning experts have been commissioned to study the Planning Application for the West Newton A Expansion.  This expert report, including a traffic report, has now been submitted as an Objection to the Planning Application.

More work is ongoing to supplement this report; the more funds we raise, the more comprehensive the objection will be, and the more chance the development will be blocked.

 

The Main Report

Click to download a PDF of the full report, including the Traffic Report.

Grounds for Objection

Having taken the opportunity to consider the documents submitted on behalf of the applicant in support of the planning application, FFEY strongly objects to the proposals for the following predominant reasons:

  • The proposed routes (blue and orange) are neither safe nor suitable for the significant levels of large vehicular movements over the lifetime of the operation.
  • There is a significant lack of information and investigation presented via the applicant’s transport assessment to meet the requirements of the NPPF (e.g., a lack of consideration of: vulnerable road users, public rights of way, inadequate swept path analysis, insufficient road widths, convoying or road closures, lack of holding areas for large vehicles, and lack of consideration of various settlements and attractions on routes).
  • The detrimental impact on the landscape including from cumulative major developments (including inadequacies with the information presented).
  • The detrimental impact from noise associated with the proposal; and
  • The proposed extraction of a fossil fuel is wholly inappropriate and contrary to the Government’s aim of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Thus, it is considered that the proposals are not in conformity with relevant planning policies at both the national and local level.

For the reasons set out in this representation, FFEY respectfully ask that the application be refused.

The reasons for objection are discussed in further detail within section 4 of this report alongside setting out other matters of concern and the general lack of information as submitted on behalf of the applicant.

 

What Else Can I Do?

How Can I Help?

  • First, submit your Objection!
  • If you are able, you could donate to help fund Expert Reports
  • If you live in the East Riding of Yorkshire:
  • If you live on the traffic route (Hull, Beverley, Hessle & North Lincolnshire):
    • Write to your councillor (in Hull; ERYC; N. Lincs.) asking your Council to submit an objection.
  • Write to your local newspaper and/or…
  • Spread the word on social media (links at the foot of the page), encouraging others to Submit Objections
  • Help us deliver leaflets
  • Join us at an Information Stall – see Events
  • Offer to help in other ways – you can get in touch here.

 

Could you help us deliver these leaflets?

Many residents around West Newton and on the traffic route have no idea of the oil & gas field plans.  If they don’t submit objections it might be assumed they are ok with it, and the drilling company claims to have ‘social licence’.  But the more people submit objections, the more chance it will be stopped.

So we are distributing many thousands of leaflets, to inform them, and encourage them to object.

But it’s a huge task, so we need all the help we can get. If you’re up for helping, please contact us.