THE Australian campaigners behind an award-winning documentary on a community’s victory against fracking hope their film “inspires” the people of Scotland as they tour the country.

Honoured at international film festivals, The Bentley Effect tells of how thousands in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales blocked unconventional gas extraction in a farming valley.

The two-year campaign included a series of blockades, culminating in a stand-off between activists and 850 riot police who had been ordered to clear the protest before the state government finally suspended Metgasco’s exploration licence.

Director Brendan Shoebridge, organiser Ian Gaillard and Simon Clough, of the anti-fracking Lock the Gate Alliance, are now touring Scotland to coincide with the last two weeks of the Scottish Government’s public consultation on fracking, which ends on May 31.

Dates in Glasgow, Falkirk, Kirkintilloch and East Kilbride have already taken place, with another at Edinburgh University tonight, where Tommy Sheppard MP and local activists OurForth Portobello will also speak.

Further UK dates are planned and Clough said: “We hope that people in Scotland will be inspired by the experience of Australian communities, and will then start to take action.

“Scotland has the chance to stop these gas plans before they get properly started, and we think our stories show that you should convince your politicians to take that chance now.”