September 30th, 2016

Campaigners prepare for final battle against Southam solar farm plans

Campaigners prepare for final battle against Southam solar farm plans Campaigners prepare for final battle against Southam solar farm plans

CAMPAIGNERS are preparing themselves for one last fight against plans to build a solar farm near Southam.

TGC Renewables Ltd applied to develop a solar energy farm roughly the size of 17 football pitches in countryside overlooking Bascote earlier this year.

But the proposals were met by criticism from Stop Bascote Solar Residents’ Group, who say the farm – earmarked for ground alongside the Grand Union Canal and made up of 14,500 panels – would damage the hamlet forever.

They also argue the proposed site would be an eyesore and add to already traffic-choked roads.

TGC opted to pull the plug on plans for a solar farm on land at Church Farm in Long Itchington in January following huge public opposition.

And despite Stratford District Council asking TGC for clarification on a number of issues in August, campaigners say the developer’s response does not address their concerns.

Group spokesman, Ian Stilwell is now calling on residents to register their final objections in a bid to stop the solar farm going ahead.

He told The Observer: “While we do not oppose renewable energy, we believe this site is not the right location for a solar farm and we have one last chance to make our voices heard.

“We believe the proposed solar farm would have an irrevocable impact on the landscape surrounding Long Itchington and Bascote.

“It will have a detrimental effect not only on the lives of people who live in Bascote but also on the many hundreds who visit the area to walk, cycle and enjoy the marvellous scenery and also be at a considerable cost to the local economy.“

The final deadline for comments on the application is Friday (November 13) with residents being asked to email Sarah Luckham at planning.applications@stratford-dc.gov.uk quoting the application number 15/01740/FUL.

The application is expected to go before the council by the end of the year.

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