Plans for huge solar farm withdrawn

First published in News

CONTROVERSIAL plans to cover nearly 100 acres of farm land with solar panels have been withdrawn, much to the delight of worried villagers.

The proposals from TGC Renewables had sought to build a £22 million solar farm on open countryside in the parish of Great Comberton, near Pershore.

But relieved residents discovered on Wednesday the plans for Lilworth Farm had been taken off the table, thanks in part to their objections, which were heard in force at a public exhibition held by TGC Renewables on June 30.

The parish council received the news by email.

Chairman Kate Collingwood said: "We are very pleased and relieved. They say it's in response to public pressure. I suspect there are also other reasons. But it doesn't really matter.

"There's a huge feeling of relief. The first thing everyone said to me was I can start sleeping now."

John Woodcock, of Pershore Road, Great Comberton, has been lobbying against the plans for weeks and carried out an exit poll at the recent consultation.

The people were given four options, with nine voting in favour of the proposal, 36 undecided, eight not prepared to answer and 126 against the plans.

He said: "We received an email from Roy Amner at TGC Renewables saying they had decided to withdraw. Everyone is very positive about this now. We are delighted it's gone away.

"We would hope if one developer has gone away because of the visibility impact and the village reaction that it will deter everyone else."

But despite the withdrawal Mr Amner says TGC Renewables do still think the site was viable.

"While we feel the opposed development was appropriate in local and national planning policies we said we would look at and take on board local comments. We decided it was appropriate not to take the plans forward after consulting with the land owner.

"We still feel the site was viable but we were urged to listen to the community.

"TGC are not looking to further develop the proposal. We have made a commitment to the parish council not to go forward."

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