There will be two screenings of 'The Bentley Effect', an award-winning documentary on Bentley's fight against Coal Seam Gas exploration.
This 90-minute film will be screened at The Pelican Playhouse on Saturday 1st July at 7:00pm with a matinee on Sunday 2nd July at 2:00pm. There will be a Q&A session with Brendan Shoebridge, the Producer/Director, following the film.
Tickets are: Adults - $15; Concession and high school students - $12; Children under 12 - Free.
Tickets available at Buckley's Music Grafton as well as online at www.thebentleyeffect.com (clic
k on Screenings).
‘The Bentley Effect’ is a film that captures and celebrates the ‘Eureka Stockade’ of our time and the social movement that led to it.
After drilling 50 wells virtually under the radar, the CSG industry arrived unannounced in 2010 to drill an exploratory well in a peaceful farming community in the Northern Rivers. A group of concerned neighbours investigated. Alarm bells rang out across the region as the community’s immune system was triggered.
A trickle of environmentalists and local farmers soon grew to a torrent of concerned citizens from all walks of life – and through this unlikely alliance, a broad social movement was born.
Following a series of increasingly dramatic blockades, the gas industry threw down the gauntlet. They announced plans to commence drilling on a farmland property in Bentley, a peaceful stretch of country, just 12 minutes from Lismore. The community’s response has now become the stuff of legends.
A cow paddock adjacent to the drill site became home to a highly organised, self-governing tent city – complete with meeting halls, kitchens, cafés, nurseries and toilets, with strict codes of non-violent conduct. Labelled by the government as ‘radical extremists’, these people were not your usual suspects. Here at Bentley stood an army of conservative, everyday Australians uniting with their entire community to fend off the mining threat and protect their land, air and water.
The bravest locked themselves onto cement fixtures blocking the way into the site. Each morning they gathered before dawn at ‘Gate A’ to rally together, set themselves tasks for the day and sing the songs that would become their protest anthems. High profile musicians gave regular pop-up concerts to the delight of the 'Protectors'.
The industry and its political supporters rallied too, with reports of a steadily growing police force with orders to break up the blockade.
The stage was set. Eventually, over 850 riot police with horses were on standby in Sydney, with orders to remove the Protectors.
Told through the eyes of the Protectors over a five-year period, ‘The Bentley Effect’ documentary forces us to ask the question:
What is truly valuable?