Controversial Yapton solar park plans recommended for approval

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CONTROVERSIAL plans to build the first solar farm in Arun in Yapton have been recommended for approval by the district’s planning officers.

Councillors were due to consider the application to build a solar park on Bilsham Farm, off Drove Lane, at a meeting of the development control committee held after the Gazette went to press on Wednesday.

The proposed 14.5 mega-watt installation and infrastructure would be built on 86 acres of agricultural land.

Once completed, it would generate enough power for 5,000 homes, according to the Langmead Group, which is behind the application.

The plans were objected to by Yapton Parish Council on several grounds, notably because of a lack of infrastructure near the site.

In its representations to Arun District Council, Yapton parish councillors said while they recognised the need for renewable energy the site for the solar farm on agricultural land was ‘undesirable and inappropriate’.

The parish council said the plans were also a departure from the development plan, would be built on agricultural land currently under cultivation, and on a site prone to flooding.

However, as part of the information Yapton Parish Council provided to Arun District Council, there were six letters supporting the application and only four objecting to it.

A report due to be considered by councillors at the development control committee said the proposal should be approved conditionally.

For the full story, read the Littlehampton Gazette on Thursday, February 13.