Push to switch on solar farm by the end of this month

Artist impression of Shacks Barn Farm Solar Park
Artist impression of Shacks Barn Farm Solar Park

Clean energy from a 37 acre, £6million development near Silverstone, could be flowing into the National Grid by the end of the month as the firm behind it attempts to take advantage of the current incentive scheme.

Last year South Northants Council gave Hive Energy permission for a five megawatt solar farm at Shacks Barn in between Whittlebury and Silverstone. The farm will be capable fulfilling the power needs of 1,500 homes.

Julian Pertwee, business development director for Hive said: “The current Renewable Obligations Certificate (ROCs) regime ends on March 30 so it has to be up and running by then. Everyone is rushing towards getting it plugged in by then. Once that’s done we can get on with the landscaping and tree planting required to go with it so it blends in with surrounding countryside.”

Mr Pertwee said impact of the 20,000 solar panels will be minimal, and once the 25 year lease on the land is over it could easily be returned to agricultural land.

Figures suggest the solar farm will stop 2,150 tonnes of CO2 being released into the atmosphere every year - nearly as much as an acre of trees would absorb - and despite the 50 lorries trips, within two year and a half years it would have off set construction phase emissions.