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Uttlesford council blocks plan for solar farm


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The scheme was targeted for 115 acres (pic Wickham Hall Solar Farm)

Uttlesford District Council has refused permission for a solar farm that would have crossed into another local authority area.
The scheme, proposed by Endurance Energy, would have covered 115 hectares near Bishop’s Stortford in a development called Wickham Hall Solar Farm straddling Uttlesford and East Herts district councils.
However, on Wednesday, April 13, Uttlesford District Council voted to refuse permission for the part of the solar farm within its area, members of the planning committee saying such a scheme on the site, some of which lies in the Green Belt, would harm the openness and character of the Wickham Hall estate.
There were also concerns about the potential impact on roads, notably the A120, which runs alongside the proposed site. The Highways Authority had objected to the application, saying increased traffic would be to the “detriment of highway safety”.
The developer had claimed the scheme would include a 47 per cent net gain in biodiversity and that 10,000 trees would be planted.
Some 35 hectares of the proposed development lie within Uttlesford district; East Herts has yet to vote on the remaining 85 acres that fall within its area.