Solar farm planned for Claverdon

Solar farm
Solar farm

A solar farm the size of more than 30 football pitches could take root in Claverdon.

More than 28,000 solar panels are planned for land by the railway line and Claverdon Sewage Works.

The move has divided the parish council and the village, which will benefit from at least £5,000 annually from the operators for village projects such as schools, park improvements and community needs.

If the project gets the go-ahead from Stratford District Council it will be sited on Park Farm, which the Burman family has run since the 1930s.

As part of the planning application, David Burman said the site is low-grade soil and sheep could graze under and around the panels.

He said farmers had been urged to diversify by successive governments and added: “The proposed project will protect the viability of the farm.”

Tony Rodger, vice-chairman of Claverdon Parish Council, said: “Members have divided views – 50 per cent in full support and 50 per cent against.” And not speaking as a parish council member, he said: “I’m in favour of it and I’m told quite a number of people in Claverdon are in favour.”

Mr Rodger said farmers had to diversify, the electricity generated will supply 1,300 homes in the Claverdon area and that although it was greenbelt, it would “be barely visible” to most residents.

He also said the Burman family would plant more trees to make it less intrusive.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England said it would be “an eyesore”, but mitigating factors included “not being very visible” to the public.

A number of households near the site have objected on the grounds of visual intrusion and loss of property value.

David and Jo Packwood, of Station Road, said: “The site is Green Belt and should be protected from this semi-industrial development.

Neighbour John Edwards said it would create “a serious and obvious visual impact”.