Brentwood: Solar farm to power 10,000 homes is approved

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Image source, PA Media
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The solar farm is planned for land on Herongate, north of the A127 and just west of Dunton Wayletts

A solar farm claimed to be able to power almost 10,000 homes in Essex has been given the go-ahead.

Brentwood Borough Council's planning committee approved the proposals for the development just outside the town on Tuesday.

Planning officers had said building the solar farm on greenbelt land was "unacceptable" and against policy.

But councillors agreed the plans could be categorised as a special circumstance.

The solar farm is planned for land on Herongate, north of the A127 and just west of Dunton Wayletts.

It would generate approximately 30MW of clean renewable energy to power the equivalent of 9,968 homes, reports the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS).

The developers said it would turn a site found to be of low biodiversity value "into something genuinely providing net gain".

Planning officers recommended the proposal was "unacceptable" on the grounds "it would result in development in the greenbelt outside any exception listed in the National Planning Policy Framework".

But councillors said the net zero benefits of the solar farm, claimed to be big enough to supply one third of Brentwood's electricity, would outweigh the "harm to the greenbelt".

The decision will now be referred to the Communities Secretary.

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