Cuadrilla site: more arrests at Balcombe

Protesters block the entrance to the Caudrilla site with a fire engine which they chained themselves to.
Protesters block the entrance to the Caudrilla site with a fire engine which they chained themselves to.

Sussex Police say six people were arrested yesterday (Thursday 1 August) at the proposed Cuadrilla drilling site at Balcombe.

All the arrest were in relation to an old fire engine that was used to block the B2036 outside the drilling site to which protesters then chained themselves.

Protesters block the entrance to the Caudrilla site with a fire engine which they chained themselves to.

Protesters block the entrance to the Caudrilla site with a fire engine which they chained themselves to.

Traffic was turned round all day while police tried to remove the protesters from inside and from the roof of the fire engine and the vehicle itself.

Thousands of vehicles were affected on the road, which is a busy through route between Cuckfield and Crawley.

The disruption attracted even more national and international media attention to the site where Cuadrilla today started to test drilll for oil.

It is not using fracking but may in the future if reserves are worth it and it receives further permissions.

However, its current drilling will involve pumping water underground and hydrochloric acid to stimulate the micrite layer.

Police said the people arrested yesterday were from London, Lewes and Slough, aged between 28 and 52 and were charged with various offences under Section 241 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act and driving offences including causing danger to other road users and wilful obstruction of highway.

Sussex Police said all were arrested in connection with offences related to the parking of an old fire engine outside the entrance to the Cuadrilla site on Thursday morning.