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An extended deadline – PAWS for thought…not oil

Paul Andrews | 21.08.2009 09:53 | Ecology | Energy Crisis | Free Spaces | World

Ancient woodland is under threat from oil drilling and we need your help to try and save it!

Europa Oil and Gas has applied to drill for oil at Bury Hill Wood in Surrey.

***Period for objection extended once again***

We have been assured today by Surrey County Council that representations will be counted right up to the morning of the Committee’s determination day. If you have not yet registered your objection there is still time -

The deadline for objections to be registered with Surrey County Council has been put back to :

9th September 2009.

We are very concerned about these plans and have already registered our objection .

Thousands of people have already done so – we need more people to send their objection into Surrey Country Council too… it’s not too late! Keep reading for details.

Bury Hill Wood is a PAWS (plantation ancient woodland site) wood.

Between the 1930s and 1980s, hundreds of thousands of hectares of ancient woodland were replanted, mostly with commercial conifers or a mixture of conifers and broadleaved trees.
The Woodland Trust is working hard to restore PAWS
in our own woods and we want to see the sensitive and appropriate restoration of all ancient woods planted with conifers that are not native to the site.

Plantation ancient woodland sites may not seem as attractive as other woodlands, but they are just as vital.

This application is for a hydrocarbon exploration site (or ‘oil well’ as most people know it) which will result in the loss of 0.74 hectares (1.8 acres) of this precious ancient woodland, part of Abinger Forest.

The ‘testing phase’ (or continous drilling activity) of the application will last a minimum of 5 weeks,
however depending on what is found the works this could last significantly longer.

As well as the complete loss of almost 2 acres of ancient woodland, constructing a bore hole involves the mobilisation of a drilling rig and related equipment - which will require highways access - and track improvements, all of which will further disturb the vulnerable habitat and wildlife reliant on what ancient woodland will remain.

Once gone, ancient woodland cannot be recreated – the interactions between plants, animals, soils, climate and people are unique and have developed over hundreds of years.

The planning application is currently being considered by Surrey County Council (SCC) and there is still time for you to influence their decision!
We are very concerned about these plans and have already registered our objection .

We need more people to send their objection into Surrey Country Council too.

Further information about the application and the campaign being run by local community is here: .

You can see more about the plans here, searching under application reference SCC REF 2008/0169/PS.
Please write a personalised letter of objection, to reach Surrey County Council by 9th September 2009. Your letter will count with SCC as an objection provided it is received by this date, which is the day of determination by Committee.

Some of the issues you might consider in your objection are included on our webpage - which also has the address to write to if you prefer to send a letter – or you can email (quoting reference SCC REF 2008/0169/PS).

Please copy us in too – .
You CAN make a difference by registering your objection.
Thank you.

More than 1,000 people have now registered their opposition to these plans to build a 120ft-high rig to look for oil under the Surrey Hills via the local community-led campaign, Leith Hill Action Group .

Anyone who is opposed to the proposals can get more details and also register their objections by visiting

Source of information:

Paul Andrews
- Homepage: