‘We don’t want to take over, we only want to be good neighbours...’

Solar panels

Solar panels

Have your say

Neighbours are being asked for their views on plans for a solar park that could power more than 2,400 homes with energy from the sun.

Hive Energy wants to hear the opinions of people living in Claughton-on-Brock and Catterall on its Westfield Farm solar park proposal, for land off the A6. The British company is also calling for ideas on how it could financially support projects in the community.

The proposed site is described as “low grade arable land”, and bosses say sheep could still graze underneath the panels, which would occupy about 30 per cent of the land area.

It is also expected to be well hidden from view, and project leaders say the site can be returned to its former use at the end of its working life. Each year, the park could also prevent 3,440 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.

A public consultation is being held at Kirkland and Catterall Memorial Hall today between 2pm and 6.15pm.

Hugh Brennan, managing director at Hive Energy, said: “When we’re creating a solar park, it’s really important for us to strike a balance between creating energy, and local people, wildlife and agriculture.

“Before we brought the site at Westfield Farm forward, we carefully evaluated it.

“Our consultation is now an opportunity for us to listen to what people living locally have to say. If approved, the site would include a host of features to help incorporate it into the landscape, to encourage biodiversity, and to create outdoor learning areas and other facilities for people to benefit from.

“As part of us being a good neighbour, we also want to hear ideas for deserving projects in the local community we could financially support.”