A BID to lobby the Government over fracking has failed to win the support of Worcester councillors - despite fears about a "lack of democracy".

As your Worcester News revealed earlier this week, ministers are considering smoothing the process of securing fracking approval by taking it out of the hands of local planning authorities.

Under the shake-up, overseen by Environment Secretary Liz Truss, fracking wells would become "nationally significant infrastructure projects" signed off at ministerial level.

Labour Councillor Lynn Denham tried to get Worcester City Council to back to a motion criticising the move, which called local elected representatives "the best people to make decisions on contentious issues".

It was rejected by the Conservatives, on the basis that as the city and county's geology has no shale, there is no prospect of fracking here.

Conservative Councillor Andy Roberts said: "Worcestershire's geology has no shale gas in it so any suggestion we'd have fracking on the Malvern Hills or anywhere else is absolute twaddle.

"And I'd also say this - in a cold snap, people still die - and if we don't find any new resources more people will still die."

He said many of those vulnerable people are in Councillor Denham's Cathedral ward, suggesting he could not turn his back on fracking for the sake of the elderly.

Fellow Tory Councillor Alan Amos said he was "not sure if the motion is relevant or has a point" because there is no prospect of any local fracking.

"Fracking is an issue for the county council's planning committee because it deals with any applications for mineral extractions," he said.

"I sit on that and over the years we've been repeatedly advised that due to the geology of the county, there is no prospect of any fracking applications because there's nothing to frack."

It led to sharp disagreement - with Labour councillors saying they had missed the point of the motion.

Councillor Richard Udall said: "We are not debating the process of fracking with this motion, that is not what this is about.

"For the record I support fracking, but I believe local people, local representatives should have a say where it happens - give democracy a chance and vote with this motion."

During the debate Councillor Denham called the remarks about the elderly dying "completely inappropriate", saying it was "not right" that local elected people should lose the right to block any fracking bids.

Fellow Cathedral ward Councillor Jabba Riaz said the existing planning system was vital, insisting that for the public it was "their only tool" to object to something.

Despite backing from Green Councillor Neil Laurenson the motion was rejected.