Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 6°C

min temp: 0°C

Search

Baylham: Concerns over solar farm still persist despite public meeting says councillor

10:23 18 March 2014

Residents of Baylham attending a previous public meeting in the village hall to discuss plans for a 50-acre solar farm

Residents of Baylham attending a previous public meeting in the village hall to discuss plans for a 50-acre solar farm

Archant

Residents’ concerns about a multi-million pound solar farm have not been allayed despite the company behind the plans holding an open meeting with protesters, says a prominent councillor.

After facing criticism of its renewable energy plans for Baylham, near Needham Market, Eco Energy World decided to organise a meeting to open up dialogue between residents and the firm.

The Baylham Parish Meeting, English Heritage and the Suffolk Preservation Society all voiced strong concerns over the proposed development.

John Field, chairman of the parish meeting and county councillor for Bramford and Blakenham, said the concerns were persisting. He also claimed that Eco Energy World had proposed to give the community about £50,000 for a fund to be used in the village if the plans are accepted.

He said: “I think they were trying to be informative and they had a number of people there who were trying to convince the village what they are trying to do is acceptable.

“I think we still believe it’s not right trying to use grade-two agricultural land for this, they’ve referred to it as relatively low-grade agricultural land but there’s little grade-one land in the country, let alone in Suffolk.”

A spokeswoman, speaking on behalf of Eco Energy World and SunEdison, which is also behind the project, said: “We were delighted that so many people chose to come and see the proposals, and grateful for all the feedback received, including suggestions for how potential community benefit funding could be spent.

“Eco Energy World, in partnership with SunEdison, has modified the original Hive Energy proposals, for a 10MW solar farm, and is now proposing an 8.5MW project.

“This is enough energy to meet the average energy needs of at least 1,800 homes. As a result of the reduction in the scheme size, the panel arrays have been pulled away from the public footpath running through the centre of the site and from the boundaries, and a significant amount of additional landscaping has been proposed.”

But Mr Field said a few homes would be surrounded on at least three sides by the solar farm if the proposals are agreed to. Eco Energy World said the solar farm would be “well-screened” from homes and would have “attractive” planted boundaries.

Mid Suffolk District Council is expected to make a decision on the scheme next month. The plans were initially withdrawn to be revised.

0 comments

An Ipswich woman who was reported missing to police today has been found safe by officers in Felixstowe.

Today we are testing your knowledge of Ipswich pubs. Some are still open for business and others have called last orders for the final time.

Community leaders in east Suffolk will be better equipped to fend off unwanted developments – after their proposed sites for new homes were approved by a planning inspector.

Discount supermarket giant Aldi has confirmed its intention to build a new store in Martlesham Heath, and has submitted a formal planning application.

Flat tyres are troublesome at the best of times and are even more of a problem when it happens to a large electric locomotive and the only place to get it fixed is 200 miles away.

The sister of a renowned Suffolk filmmaker who fought brain cancer with “determination and incredible strength” is calling for more research into the disease following his death.

The director of Ed Sheeran’s Castle on the Hill video has praised the Suffolk community for helping during the filming.

A national conference discussing how mental health issues affect young people and what support should be provided took place at the University of Suffolk today.

A crewman who suffered severe burns in an explosion on board a container ship, which killed one of his colleagues, is reported to be making good progress in hospital.

Businesses based in rural parts of the region are preparing for battle with the government after it emerged that thousands faced a huge rise in commercial rates.

Most read

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24