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Lightsource BP, a leading developer and operator of solar farms in the UK, will be outlining their proposal to develop, fund and build a 49.9MW solar farm on 231 acres of land at Down Barn Farm, Cholderton Estate, Cholderton, Wiltshire, SP4 0DR, at a community information event on Tuesday 22nd October. Lightsource BP is inviting residents from the surrounding area to attend the community information event, where further details will be made available on the proposals.

The community information event will be held in Cholderton Village Hall, and residents are invited to drop in at any time between 4:30pm and 7:30pm. The Lightsource BP team will be on hand to discuss the planning proposal and gather feedback from the local community.

The proposed solar farm will provide enough clean renewable energy to power 16,936 homes, saving 21,319 tonnes of carbon emissions every year, the equivalent of taking 4,536 large family cars off the roads.

The selected fields have been chosen because they are well-screened by local topography which limits surrounding views of the solar farm.

The initial layout for the solar farm at Down Barn Farm has been designed in such a way that most of the open grassland on the site will be suitable for sheep grazing, allowing the land to retain its current agricultural use. Wide grassy avenues will be left between the rows of solar panels, to reduce shading and optimise the amount of sunlight each row of panels receives. This will leave around 70% of the solar farm as open grassland, ideal for grazing livestock, while the panels provide shade, shelter and protection for sheep. A bespoke Biodiversity Management Plan will also be developed to inform the design of the proposal, and ensure opportunities are identified for enhancing and creating new habitats for local wildlife.

Another key consideration of Lightsource BP’s in this project is the protection and enhancement of the heritage of the site. Lightsource BP is aware of the presence of Scheduled Monuments and non-Scheduled Monuments on and near the proposed boundaries of the Site. With this in mind, Lightsource BP has formally engaged with Historic England to ensure the correct protection measures are incorporated into the design and layout of the solar installation.

Conor McGuigan, Director of Business Development for Europe, Lightsource BP said:

“Solar energy is not only clean and renewable, but it also generates locally-produced electricity. This makes solar an important part of meeting the global rise in energy demand efficiently and more sustainably.

We want to ensure that local communities in and around the proposed location have all the information they need about this project. We’re holding this information event to speak to elected representatives, local businesses and residents of the local community, and to gather feedback. This event is also a great way for the community to ask any questions they may have about the project or solar energy in general.”