Residents concerned over solar farm plans

Residents from Fen Lane, are concerned about plans for a new solar farm development in Creeting St Peter.
Residents from Fen Lane, are concerned about plans for a new solar farm development in Creeting St Peter.
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Residents have voiced concerns that plans to build a solar farm in Creeting St Peter will affect the value of their homes.

Renewable energy developer MS Power Projects Ltd is currently preparing a planning application to Mid Suffolk District Council for the installation of a 11MWp ground-mounted solar farm on land at Grove Farm.

On July 25, a drop-in session was held in Creeting St Peter Church Hall to outline the developer’s plans.

But residents near to the site are worried the farm will become a ‘field of black glass’, ruining views and potentially lowering the value of their homes.

Fraser Butters said the solar farm would be visible from four upstairs bedrooms of his home.

He said: “At the end of the day our pension is our property and if it is affected by ten percent that is a big deal.

“I understand everyone has a box to tick when it comes to renewable energy but it is worrying how it will affect property prices.”

Robert and Lesley Warnes have lived in their bungalow next to the proposed site for 35 years.

Robert said although plans outlined at the drop-in session to shield the site with trees were encouraging, he was worried the solar farm would be an eyesore.

“I am not happy about it,” he said. “We live in this area with green fields all around us, now it’s going to be a field of black glass. The other thing that appals us is they are going to put a security fence around it with CCTV on top, it will look like a prison camp.”

Chris Brake, planning manager for MS Power, said: “On Thursday July 25, MS Power Projects met with members of the local community and delegates from both Creeting St Peter and Creeting St Mary Parish Councils at a public exhibition.

“All the members of the local community and delegates of the respective councils were invited to attend the public exhibition, which was held at the Church Hall in Creeting St Peter.

“The public exhibition allowed members of the public to meet our part of our planning team, discuss the proposed development and express their views and opinions on the development proposals.

“MS Power Projects is considering these comments and whether they can be incorporated into the planning application ahead of its submission.

“We have undertaken a detailed assessment of environmental impacts, which will be included as part of the planning application.

“Details of the planning application will be available online when the Council has validated the application.”