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Grain villagers meet over gas plant safety fears

lng grain
lng grain

Villagers in the shadow of Britain’s biggest liquefied natural gas plant demanded answers over their safety last night.

Almost 200 attended a tense meeting on the Isle of Grain, a mile from Grain LNG which has high-pressure gas tanks the size of the Albert Hall.

The terminal by the Medway estuary imports a fifth of the gas which ends up in UK homes, but the village’s only escape road is yards away and would be closed in a disaster.

Grain LNG terminal manager Simon Fairman (left) and Cllr Mike O'Brien (Con) at meeting in Grain Village Hall
Grain LNG terminal manager Simon Fairman (left) and Cllr Mike O'Brien (Con) at meeting in Grain Village Hall

Resident Jack Hope, who began a campaign earlier this year, was slammed as “obsessive” by the authorities but gained hundreds of supporters.

The two-hour meeting brought together chiefs from Medway Council, Grain LNG, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the police and fire services.

The atmosphere was tense after Robin Cooper, the council's director of regeneration, community and culture, said a new escape road would be unworkable.

He also revealed a blunder in the council’s new emergency plan, which said there could be more fatalities than people in the village.

Terminal manager Simon Fairman, pictured speaking, said: “We have worked hard to be a good neighbour to this village.”

Added safety measures are now proposed but Mr Hope’s daughter, Lisa Hood, said: “I believe these things are only happening because we’ve had to push for them.”

Full report of the meeting in the Medway Messenger, out Friday.

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