- Egdon Resources has issued an operational update ahead of "a potentially transformational period for the company and the onshore UK E&P business with significant news flow expected in both conventional and unconventional resources exploration".

The company said it had a broad and extensive portfolio of projects and the last quarter had seen progress on a number of its strategic objectives.

It said that of note were:

- Acquisition of a 50% interest in PEDL278 containing the Kirk Smeaton tight gas discovery and further unconventional resources potential

- Acquisition of an additional 20% interest in PEDL209 (deep) and signature of a new option agreement with Total with, when exercised, a carried work programme valued at up to £4.85 million to Egdon

- Progress with the consents for the Springs Road wells with drilling now expected later in 2017

- Acquisition of the Fiskerton Airfield (EXL294) producing oil field in the East Midlands which adds production from the effective date of 1 January 2017

- Issue of the Wressle Environmental Permit variations and submission of the appeals against the January and July planning refusals which have been co-joined and will be considered at an appeal hearing expected in November 2017

- Completion of the company's exit from France with the relinquishment of the Pontenx permit and withdrawal from the Mairy permit.

Managing director Mark Abbott said: "The fundamentals of the business remain robust with the company being debt free, holding a range of assets with excellent potential for both conventional and unconventional resources in a jurisdiction which remains commercially attractive even with current commodity prices, and with a strong balance sheet allowing us to deliver on our strategy.

"We remain committed to, and optimistic about, obtaining planning consent for the development of the Wressle oil discovery and look forward to the planning appeal in early November and the decision, which is likely early in 2018.

"In the meantime we plan to workover the newly acquired Fiskerton Airfield wells to increase production and expect the Holmwood-1 well to be drilled in the Weald with potential exposure to the Kimmeridge Limestone play which is due to be tested at the nearby Brockham oilfield and Horse Hill and Broadford Bridge discoveries.

"We look forward to commencement of operations at Springs Road-1, the potentially play opening Gainsborough Trough exploration well where Egdon's costs are carried, later in 2017.

"This well along with the Tinker Lane well to the south and other UK drilling and testing activity will potentially provide the data required to de-risk our core area for unconventional resources."

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