MP backs Britain’s largest solar farm, planned for Wroughton

Swindon Advertiser: The area in which the solar farm could be sited The area in which the solar farm could be sited

CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a photovoltaic solar farm the size of 100 football pitches on the edge of Wroughton have been backed by the MP for south Swindon Robert Buckland.

If approved, this will be the largest facility of its kind in the UK.

It will consist of 160,000 panels covering an area of 168 acres on part of the former RAF airfield.

The solar farm, proposed to be inside North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, would be visible from the Ridgeway National Trail and Barbury Castle Iron Age hill fort.

Under the plans, set to go before a planning committee on November 12, the farm will have the capacity to generate enough power for about 12,000 households.

A number of groups have come out in opposition including Natural England, English Heritage and the North Wessex Downs AONB.

Despite this, Mr Buckland said he will support the proposals as it will help the community in many ways.

He said: “After looking at all the arguments on both sides, I am supporting this proposal.

“It will truly put Swindon on the map. It will bring huge benefits for the community, the economy and the environment.

“Solar power generation is a vital part of the UK’s energy mix, and the fact that Swindon will host this important project is something of which the whole borough can be proud.”

He added the majority of the community backed the scheme, which would bring a lot of money to the area.

“Crucially, a community benefit fund will be set up for Wroughton amounting to about £42,000 a year for 30 years to be spent on community projects, with funding allocated by the community,” said Mr Buckland.

“A public consultation was held in January, with almost 80 per cent of people saying they supported the plans.”

He said the site will only affect very broad views from high vantage points in the AONB and the area already has a light-industrial site which houses several very large aircraft hangars and old concrete runways.

In September the AONB Unit wrote to ask the Secretary Of State to intervene if the plan gets the go-ahead from Swindon Council.

It wants the unprecedented application to be called in due to its size, location in an AONB against national policy and Swindon Council’s own planning policy.

Comments (11)

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6:36pm Fri 1 Nov 13

Hmmmf says...

Mr Buckland said:
Crucially, a community benefit fund will be set up for Wroughton amounting to about £42,000 a year for 30 years to be spent on community projects, with funding allocated by the community

Crucially failing to note that in fact the money will come from the people themselves through taxes on their famously-increasing energy bills.
[quote][p][bold]Mr Buckland[/bold] said: Crucially, a community benefit fund will be set up for Wroughton amounting to about £42,000 a year for 30 years to be spent on community projects, with funding allocated by the community [/quote] Crucially failing to note that in fact the money will come from the people themselves through taxes on their famously-increasing energy bills. Hmmmf

6:40pm Fri 1 Nov 13

abbotboy says...

A FOI request stated that his project would be funded by private means and no costs to the public, SSE have said that if Mr Cameron, cuts green gas taxes, the feed in tariff for these panels will drop to about 5 - 8p per panel, is that still viable then..
A FOI request stated that his project would be funded by private means and no costs to the public, SSE have said that if Mr Cameron, cuts green gas taxes, the feed in tariff for these panels will drop to about 5 - 8p per panel, is that still viable then.. abbotboy

9:46pm Fri 1 Nov 13

house on the hill says...

It doesn't really matter anyway, latest estimates are that the world will be over populated and unable to sustain itself in about 100 years, so this is way to little way too late!
It doesn't really matter anyway, latest estimates are that the world will be over populated and unable to sustain itself in about 100 years, so this is way to little way too late! house on the hill

11:33am Sat 2 Nov 13

attilla the hun says...

I hideous blot on the landscape, subsidised by green taxes, vote him out
I hideous blot on the landscape, subsidised by green taxes, vote him out attilla the hun

12:42pm Sat 2 Nov 13

twasadawf says...

This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission
This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission twasadawf

3:09pm Sat 2 Nov 13

house on the hill says...

twasadawf wrote:
This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission
so what is the answer then to replacing fossil fuels and quickly? Everyone talks about electric and hybrid cars but you still need to generate the electricity and from what? And what will be powering the planes and container ships of the future to move goods and people around the world when the oil is gone? you cant just plug in a Jumbo at 35,000 ft and I doubt many would want a nuclear powered plane either, so whats the alternative then?
[quote][p][bold]twasadawf[/bold] wrote: This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission[/p][/quote]so what is the answer then to replacing fossil fuels and quickly? Everyone talks about electric and hybrid cars but you still need to generate the electricity and from what? And what will be powering the planes and container ships of the future to move goods and people around the world when the oil is gone? you cant just plug in a Jumbo at 35,000 ft and I doubt many would want a nuclear powered plane either, so whats the alternative then? house on the hill

3:56pm Sat 2 Nov 13

twasadawf says...

house on the hill wrote:
twasadawf wrote:
This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission
so what is the answer then to replacing fossil fuels and quickly? Everyone talks about electric and hybrid cars but you still need to generate the electricity and from what? And what will be powering the planes and container ships of the future to move goods and people around the world when the oil is gone? you cant just plug in a Jumbo at 35,000 ft and I doubt many would want a nuclear powered plane either, so whats the alternative then?
Fracking is the way ahead as you get yer water heated as it comes out the tap
[quote][p][bold]house on the hill[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]twasadawf[/bold] wrote: This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission[/p][/quote]so what is the answer then to replacing fossil fuels and quickly? Everyone talks about electric and hybrid cars but you still need to generate the electricity and from what? And what will be powering the planes and container ships of the future to move goods and people around the world when the oil is gone? you cant just plug in a Jumbo at 35,000 ft and I doubt many would want a nuclear powered plane either, so whats the alternative then?[/p][/quote]Fracking is the way ahead as you get yer water heated as it comes out the tap twasadawf

6:12pm Sat 2 Nov 13

PaulD says...

You always find that it is those that only have a decade or 2 of life left on this Earth that moan about their view being obscured by wind farms/solar farms. They don't have to worry about the energy needs of the future as they will be dead.
You always find that it is those that only have a decade or 2 of life left on this Earth that moan about their view being obscured by wind farms/solar farms. They don't have to worry about the energy needs of the future as they will be dead. PaulD

12:03am Sun 3 Nov 13

twasadawf says...

PaulD wrote:
You always find that it is those that only have a decade or 2 of life left on this Earth that moan about their view being obscured by wind farms/solar farms. They don't have to worry about the energy needs of the future as they will be dead.
Cheerful
[quote][p][bold]PaulD[/bold] wrote: You always find that it is those that only have a decade or 2 of life left on this Earth that moan about their view being obscured by wind farms/solar farms. They don't have to worry about the energy needs of the future as they will be dead.[/p][/quote]Cheerful twasadawf

7:04am Mon 4 Nov 13

TakeTheMick says...

A O N B. Councils own comments.
A O N B. Councils own comments. TakeTheMick

8:21am Mon 4 Nov 13

house on the hill says...

twasadawf wrote:
house on the hill wrote:
twasadawf wrote:
This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission
so what is the answer then to replacing fossil fuels and quickly? Everyone talks about electric and hybrid cars but you still need to generate the electricity and from what? And what will be powering the planes and container ships of the future to move goods and people around the world when the oil is gone? you cant just plug in a Jumbo at 35,000 ft and I doubt many would want a nuclear powered plane either, so whats the alternative then?
Fracking is the way ahead as you get yer water heated as it comes out the tap
That is just a temporary fix, what about the long term energy needs when the oil and gas are completely gone, the middle east is back to being a desert again and planes cant take off and container ships with all our food cant sail as they have no fuel to power them. Would you trust a solar powered plane or boat? Or a nuclear one come to that? Lots of moans but no solutions.
[quote][p][bold]twasadawf[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]house on the hill[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]twasadawf[/bold] wrote: This shiny glass farm will look horrendous looking back from the downs/barbury castle ,the government are to quick to give shiny glass farms permission[/p][/quote]so what is the answer then to replacing fossil fuels and quickly? Everyone talks about electric and hybrid cars but you still need to generate the electricity and from what? And what will be powering the planes and container ships of the future to move goods and people around the world when the oil is gone? you cant just plug in a Jumbo at 35,000 ft and I doubt many would want a nuclear powered plane either, so whats the alternative then?[/p][/quote]Fracking is the way ahead as you get yer water heated as it comes out the tap[/p][/quote]That is just a temporary fix, what about the long term energy needs when the oil and gas are completely gone, the middle east is back to being a desert again and planes cant take off and container ships with all our food cant sail as they have no fuel to power them. Would you trust a solar powered plane or boat? Or a nuclear one come to that? Lots of moans but no solutions. house on the hill

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