A GREENPEACE campaigner will be donning a wizard's hat and walking from Herefordshire to London to campaign against fracking in Herefordshire.

Rick Guest will dress up as Gandalf from Lord of the Rings to take the message from the shires of England to the heart of government that fracking will be opposed at every turn.

South Western Energy has formally been issued a government licence to explore for gas and oil in the Wye Valley and its neighbouring Forest of Dean.

The company will have five years to drill and it could affect Goodrich, Whitchurch and Symonds Yat.

Mr Guest said: "This is a really important issue about the right to clean water and the right to bring our children up on land that is not poisoned so that a few people can make a quick profit.

"It’s about democracy. How long will politicians remain in power if they sell our land and children’s futures to profiteers?

"If the British government has any respect for the citizens of this country they would put a moratorium on fracking right now and then seriously look at the issues and the options. They are there. We do not need to destroy our land to have energy."

Mr Guest sat outside MP Jesse Norman's office in Hereford three months ago with a sign saying "Don't frack the shire."

Mr Norman has since been made minister for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which holds responsibility for climate change.

Mr Guest has also joined forces with Frack Off Our Forest, the Forest of Dean anti-fracking campaign, who will join him on part of his walk.

On August 17 Mr Guest will walk from Hereford to Hoarwithy dressed as Gandalf in a "Tolkien style quest through the shire."

At Hoarwithy he will take a canoe down the River Wye to Ross-on-Wye and then on to Symonds Yat. On August 20, he will be joined at noon by Frack Off Our Forest at Yat Rock and they will then walk along the River Wye.

It is the first leg of a walk during which Mr Guest plans to take his “Don’t frack the shire” message to Downing Street, gathering support along the way.

He said: "I think the government may have underestimated the resistance to fracking. There are thousands of us who believe that fracking is the wrong way ahead, leading to nothing but grief and confrontation."