HC Deb 19 December 1935 vol 307 cc1970-1W

asked the Secretary of Mines whether he is aware that the area of 101 square miles in the counties of Surrey and Southampton covered by his recent order to prospect for oil includes certain lands on the Hog's Back recently purchased by the Surrey County Council for permanent preservation as view points; and if he has imposed any obligation on the prospectors to so conduct their operations as not to injure the amenities of such view points or of the views from such points?


The Hog's Back forms part of the northern boundary of the licensed area referred to, but I have no information as to the particular localities which the licensee may select for his operations within this substantial area of 101 square miles. I would point out that the grant of a licence does not confer on the licensee any right to enter on land, which can only be secured by arrangement with the landowner or by an order of the Railway and Canal Commission under Section 3 of the Petroleum (Production) Act, 1934, and the provisions of the Mines (Working Facilities and Support) Act, 1923. The section referred to also provides that the commission, in considering whether to grant a right, shall have regard to the effect on the amenities of the locality. In addition, the Clause relating to the preservation of amenities which is one of the model Clauses scheduled to the Petroleum (Production) Regulations, 1935, has been included in the licence and provides that the licensee shall carry out all operations within the licensed area in such a manner as not to interfere unnecessarily with the amenities of the locality.