Solar Farm Update – June 2021
Planning Application– has now been submitted to Hambleton DC and will be available soon to view online at www.hambleton.gov.uk/planning where you should also find details about the public consultation and decision process. Alternatively, the planning documents, surveys and reports can also be viewed at www.scrutonsolarfarm.com.
Walking the Site – Two representatives from Scruton Parish Council (Chairman Syd Nye and Cllr. John Thompson) met with Chris Sowerbutts (Lightrock Power) in Scruton on 25 May to walk across the proposed site. A number of solar farm questions were discussed and it is hoped that this will lead to a new phase of engagement and dialogue between Lightrock and SPC.
Public Meeting – Lightrock Ltd. hosted an open public meeting on Zoom on Wednesday 26 May. Some 28 people logged in for the 2 hour meeting where Chris Sowerbutts presented an outline of the finalised design, including some computer generated ‘photomontages’ of what the scheme would look like from certain specific locations. Bluefield Solar, who are financing the project and who will be responsible for the long term running and operation of the site, were represented at the meeting by Neil Wood. Members of the public asked a wide range of questions about various aspects of the solar farm plans. A full set of Q&As from the meeting has been published on the website at www.scrutonsolarfarm.com
Community Benefit Fund – There is no statutory requirement for a ‘Community Levy’ to be paid for a solar farm development. However, Lightrock has confirmed that a ‘Community Benefit Fund’ of £10k would be set aside at the start of the project. Some ideas for how the fund could be used have already been raised, but further suggestions would be welcomed by Lightrock. Suitable projects relating to the environment, education or ecology would be funded directly (not via the local authority or Parish Council).
Scruton News encourages our readers to review the planning application and all Q&As online, and to take part in Hambleton DC’s consultation process.