Northumberland Estates submits plans for solar farm in Alnwick

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Northumberland Estates has submitted plans for a solar farm in Alnwick.

The proposed site, close to the A1 on the southern edge of the town, has potential to deliver up to four megawatts of renewable solar energy to local businesses via private wire connections.

Solar energy is a significant move into the renewables sector for the Duke of Northumberland’s development company.

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In addition to this scheme, the company has also announced long-term plans to deliver roof-top solar energy and battery energy storage systems that will assist the transition towards clean, domestically produced, renewable energy.

A solar farm is planned in Alnwick.A solar farm is planned in Alnwick.
A solar farm is planned in Alnwick.

As part of the Estates’ ongoing environmental stewardship, this scheme directly contributes towards Northumberland County Council’s 2030 carbon-neutral goal.

Maximising the potential of renewables will help lower costs in the transfer to a greener, more sustainable, energy system.

In the proposed scheme, Quotient Sciences’ is the first business to sign up for the supply at their Alnwick facility.

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Gareth Jenkins, vice president of science and technology at Quotient Sciences, said: “It’s important to us to reduce our impact on the environment and we are thankful for the opportunity from Northumberland Estates to utilise green technologies locally which will reduce our energy costs as well as support our carbon reduction plan.”

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Barry Spall, development planner at Northumberland Estates, added: “Our goal is to help with the transition to a low carbon future through the development and management of new renewable energy assets, which support the delivery of more sustainable energy.

"Our proposed plan for a solar farm in Alnwick will not only deliver green energy but will support local businesses with their energy supply.”

Solar is one of the most non-intrusive energy technologies to deliver emitting no noise or pollution, which in conjunction with the biodiversity considerations will provide a broad range of benefits for communities nearby.

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The proposed development provides biodiversity net gains through a progressive ecological and land management plan to create wildlife havens, and wildflower grassland encouraging bees, butterflies and birds, with some areas potentially retained for sheep grazing.

Rigorous assessments have been undertaken to ensure that the site is suitable for solar farm development.

The time-limited scheme will run for 40 years, generating renewable energy and offsetting CO2 emissions; at the end of its lifespan, the land will revert to agricultural land.