Third Wix solar farm set for the green light

Solar farm. Library image.

Solar farm. Library image. - Credit: Archant

A proposed solar park in Wix has been tipped for approval by council planning officers.

Hive Energy want to build the 5MW solar panel array – enough to power 1,100 homes – at Green Farm, off Oakley Road.

The company had initially had plans for an installation twice the size turned down by Tendring District Council (TDC) as it was deemed to be too large, incongruous with the landscape, and the developers had not taken into account a number of other solar farms already given planning permission in the area.

However the firm has now halved the size of its plans and provided an assessment on the cumulative impact of all the solar farms in the vicinity.

The latest application has been referred to TDC’s planning committee over concerns at the growing cluster of such parks around Wix and the direct access planned onto the A120.

Hive Energy’s assessment it concludes that only people using Spinnels Lane or two footpaths would see successive solar parks, and that as planting around the edge of each grows this impact would be minimised – a judgment planning officers at TDC agree with.

The Highways Agency has also not raised any objections about the road access.

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Two sites have been given the green light, with one already operational, at Wix Lodge and Barn Farm, Bradfield, while a third at Burnt Ash Farm was refused but is being appealed.

Councillors on the committee will meet on Tuesday April 28 to rule on the proposals.

If given the go-ahead the site will be operational for 25 years.