Public consultation launched for largest solar farm in UK
Ambitious plans to create the largest community-owned solar farm in the UK are going out to public consultation.
The 49-acre site at Bretton Hall Farm lies within the administrative boundaries of Flintshire County Council and Cheshire West and Chester Council, spanning two local planning authority boundaries, and the national boundary between Wales and England.
Consultation events for local residents and stakeholders will take place later this month through drop-in events in Saltney and Broughton.
Ynni Newydd (New Energy) the organisation behind the development said the proposed solar farm will have a generation capacity of 30MW and provide enough electricity to supply 8,400 homes and sources say it “will be a source of clean, renewable energy that will mitigate climate change and provide benefits to the local community through community ownership.”
The company estimates that this will lead to an overall saving of 6800 tonnes of CO2 annually, and said it plans to raise the development money by offering shares to local residents and organisations.
It predicts that within 3-5 years the project would begin to generate a surplus “to support projects providing sustainable community benefits.”
Over the 35-year operational lifetime of the solar project Ynni Newydd expect that surplus to range between £10 to £20 million, depending on wholesale energy prices.
Grant Peisley a Director of Ynni Newydd said: “All are welcome to come and meet the team, this is a fantastic opportunity for them to talk to local people about the solar farm. Before putting together the planning documentation we held an early consultation which showed a lot of interest.
“Due to Covid, however, this needed to be virtually, so this is the first time we have been able to go into the community and we’re really looking forward to it”.
Consultations for the proposed developments will be held at Saltney Community Centre on Thursday 25th November and Broughton Wings Club on Friday 26th November, between 1pm and 7.30pm.
There will also be a static display in Lache Library between 25th November and 2nd December.
Staff will be present on launch day the 25th, between 2pm and 7pm.
There will be a large display available for people to view and browse, and forms to express and submit their views.