A FORMER Ryedale district councillor was among the healthcare professionals who signed a letter to Prime Minster Theresa May imploring her to ban fracking.

Retired GP Tim Thornton is co-chairman of the Concerned Health Professionals of the UK group, which wrote the letter.

In it, they appealed to the Prime Minister to consider her legacy, and said that fracking presents risk to health and drives climate breakdown.

“This experiment is over,” they said. “We don’t want fracking, we don’t want more investment in gas production and we don’t want the plastics.”

Meanwhile, the Knapton-based Third Energy Onshore Ltd - the Ryedale gas company poised to frack its well at Kirby Misperton - was sold to US energy firm Alpha Energy under its York Energy banner.

The sale, first announced in April, was completed last week. The sale includes the onshore gas exploration, appraisal and production company Third Energy UK Gas Ltd, and Third Energy Trading Ltd which owns the power generating station at East Knapton.

Tom Reed, CEO of Alpha Energy, said: “We look forward to deploying our engineering-led approach to being responsible owners and operators of these onshore assets.”

The business also appointed Alan Linn - formerly Third Energy’s chief operating officer - as its new chief executive officer.

He said: “I am very pleased that Third Energy Onshore has secured its long-term future, including the jobs of our team in Yorkshire, through acquisition by York Energy. Our focus will be on developing our onshore gas and power businesses.”

Third Energy has also contacted the Kirby Misperton village community liaison group to request a meeting in mid-August.