Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Work to start on 200-acre solar park near Southwick

Work is due to begin in spring on a 200-acre (82-hectare) solar park in Hampshire after planning permission was granted.

The Southwick Estate solar park will be located north of Portsmouth and north-east of the village of Southwick.

Objections were raised by ramblers and the Campaign to Protect Rural England over the park's visual impact.

However, council planners said the park's location and extra tree or hedge planting would protect views.

The site of the future solar park is currently used as farmland.

The plans were approved by nine out of 10 councillors on Winchester City Council's planning committee.

Applicants Hive Energy Ltd and Welborne Solar Ltd say the solar farm will generate enough energy to power 12,000 homes and will prevent 17,200 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.

Hive Energy says at the time of being granted planning permission, Southwick Estate was the largest solar park on the south coast of England.

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