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This page is accessible on desktop and most mobile devices. For the best user experience, we recommend viewing from a desktop device. Information may not appear fully on some mobile devices. Electronic and hard copies of exhibition material are available, please contact us for more information.

Public Exhibitions

We are keen to engage with the local community and as part of our pre-application consultation we held public exhibitions in the local area to enable people to find out more about the proposal and provide us with their views. RES staff were on hand to answer any questions or queries, and comment forms were available to gather feedback.

The public exhibitions initiated a consultation period being run by RES to gather comments on the proposal.  The closing date for comments was 6th May 2022.

All information provided at the public exhibitions is available to view below. 

Why Solar?

Renewable energy at lowest cost to the consumer1

Tackling climate change by supporting the UK’s target of net zero by 2050

Specifically designed to be dual purpose, combining continued agricultural use and renewable generation

Quick to deploy

Modern, efficient technology allowing more electricity generation in less space

Diversification of agricultural business

Significant biodiversity enhancement opportunities, supporting new & existing plant & animal  habitats

High level of public support2


Design Layout and Infrastructure

The plan on the right shows the preliminary layout for the 49.9MW Longhedge Solar Farm.

In addition to the solar panels, the site infrastructure is expected to include:

➢ A network of on-site tracks

➢ A substation compound with security fencing

➢ Inverters on hardstandings

➢ Temporary construction compound

➢ Deer fencing around the perimeter of the solar farm
Click on image to enlarge


Environmental Considerations

RES design their solar farms so that they will fit sensitively in the surrounding landscape.

As part of the planning process, RES carries out a number of detailed technical and environmental surveys to ensure any potential impact upon the environment, landscape, heritage and local residents is appropriately assessed and mitigated. These assessments include:

» Landscape and Visual
» Agricultural Land Classification
» Ecology
» Noise
» Cultural Heritage and Archaeology
» Glint and Glare
» Traffic and Transport

The results of these surveys, along with feedback from the local community and stakeholders, are taken into account as the design of the solar farm is refined and finalised.  The assessments will accompany any planning application that is made.


Landscape and Ecology

The plan to the right shows a preliminary Landscape and Ecological Management Plan (LEMP).

The LEMP details our immediate and long-term commitment to manage planting and other landscape measures as well as the protection and enhancement of biodiversity around the solar farm.

Click on image to enlarge


Traffic and Access

Click on image to enlarge

Access is an important consideration when selecting a potential solar farm site.

The plan to the right shows the proposed delivery route and access point.

We will consult with the local authority, the emergency services, the local community and other relevant bodies to produce a Construction Traffic Management Plan (CTMP) to support any planning application. The CTMP outlines the overall framework for managing the safe movement of construction and delivery traffic as well as itemising the expected number of traffic movements and timing restrictions.

The traffic movements will be limited to avoid morning and evening peak times, where possible. There will also be a dedicated Community Liaison Officer to engage with local residents throughout the construction and operational phases, if the solar farm is consented.



Public Rights of Way

RES understands the importance of the Public Rights of Way (PRoW) to the local community. Solar infrastructure will be set back from the PRoW and planting will be proposed along sections of the PRoW to ensure openness is not compromised and to reduce potential visual impact.

As part of the proposal, RES is exploring the creation of a permissive path to enhance the local PRoW network. The plan to the left shows two options for the locations of the new permissive path.

Permissive path A would create a circular walking route out of Hawksworth village, connecting with the existing PRoW to the north of the solar farm.

Permissive Path B would provide an off-road path for riders and walkers alongside the adjacent road, linking the two existing bridleways to the north and east of the solar farm.

We are keen to develop this proposal in collaboration with the community, outdoor recreation groups and the local authority. We are asking visitors to choose their preferred permissive path option. To provide feedback please complete a comments form.

Click on image to enlarge


How a Solar Panel Works

Solar PV panels are typically made from silicon, which is a great semi-conductor, installed in a metal panel frame with a glass casing. The sun gives off light, even on cloudy days, and when these light particles, or photons, hit the thin layer of silicon on the top of a solar panel, they knock electrons off the silicon atoms which creates a direct current (DC) of electricity. This is captured by the wiring in the solar panels. This DC electricity is then converted to alternating current (AC) by an inverter which is then funnelled into the grid network. AC is the type of electrical current used when you plug appliances into normal wall sockets. Bifacial modules have two sides of solar cells, enabling additional energy generation from the diffuse light reflected off the grass, on the rear-side of the panels.

In most cases solar panels are recyclable and there are well established industrial processes to do this. There are organisations around the UK and Europe specialising in solar recycling, such as PV Cycle and the European Recycling Platform. They are working with solar developers to minimise electrical waste and recycle old panels in line with the Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) regulations.



1 https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/6556027d046ed400148b99fe/electricity-generation-costs-2023.pdf