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Solar farm gets go-ahead near Fareham
ONE of the UK's largest solar farms has been given the go ahead in a Hampshire town.
The scheme will see hundreds of photovoltaic panels installed on a former landfill site near Fareham.
The 56-acre solar farm is said to be worth up to £20m.
Alongside the solar farm will be a gas management system and both will help provide energy to the national grid.
It is estimated the site at Titchfield Lane, Funtley, will generate 14 megawatts of electricity and power up to 5,000 homes in the local area.
Historically the land had been used for sand and gravel extraction, then became Funtley Refuse Tip.
Since then the site has been capped and allowed to return to grassland and there are raised gas monitoring wells and ventilation pipes laid out across it.
Applicant architecture, surveying and town planning firm Cassidy + Ashton, based in Preston, said it had successfully addressed issues regarding ecology and footpaths that had been raised during the planning application.
It submitted further survey work and amended proposals to resolve concerns raised.
Planning permission was granted by Winchester City Council at the end of last month.
Those behind the proposal say the panels will sit on the land rather than require deep foundations, so there will be minimal disruption to the local community and no disturbance of the landfill site during the installation period which will take a few weeks.
Alban Cassidy, chartered town planner and environmental consultant at Cassidy + Ashton, said: “This project will make positive use of a former landfill site and will deliver a valuable source of energy not only for the local area, but for the whole country.
“In many ways this was not a straight forward project to work on, and we were presented with complex challenges that really tested our knowledge and expertise.
“In particular, the scheme was required to be implemented without disturbing the landfill site or releasing contamination, which we were able to successfully demonstrate.”
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