Ever since the informal poll on fracking that Balcombe Parish Council carried out last year there has been much discussion about exactly what the results of that poll mean.

In consequence the Parish Council has decided to hold a new consultative ballot to influence its future policy on oil/gas exploration/extraction matters.

It has appointed Electoral Reform Services (a company set up by the Electoral Reform Society to run ballots and elections) to administer this ballot. Within the next week ERS will send a ballot paper by post to everyone on the Electoral Roll for Balcombe. If you do not receive a ballot paper by 23rd October, please first check that your name is on the Electoral Roll and, if it is, contact the Parish Clerk (tel: 01444 811833).

On the ballot paper are three questions asking how you think the Parish Council should respond to:
1. Cuadrilla’s application for planning permission to flow test the well it has already drilled at Lower Stumble
2. Any future applications to explore for or extract oil or gas within the parish that would or might involve fracking
3. Any future applications to explore for or extract oil or gas within the parish that would not involve fracking.

Completed ballot papers must be returned to Electoral Reform Services in the pre-paid reply envelopes provided to arrive by not later than noon on Thursday 7th November. The ballot papers will be scrutinised by an independent scrutineer at ERS, who will report the results to the Parish Council. The Parish Council, which will not have access to the ballot papers, will publish these results as soon as practicable after it receives them.

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