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Plans To Install Solar Panels In Forest

Last Saturday, the 2nd February 2013,  Swindon Council held a consultation meeting to discuss the possibility of building a solar panel farm within Shaw Forest. The area used to be a landfill site.

Solar panel in a forest setting
(image credit: peupleloup)

Back on the 12th November 2012 James Owen who is the head of energy and sustainability for Swindon Commercial Services, attended West Swindon Forum where he explained about the possible installation of anywhere between 16,000 to 32,000 solar panels. The wide variance between the number of panels was dependent upon a site survey.

Between 22 to 25 acres could be used for the solar panel farm that could be capable of generating enough electricity to power 1,500 houses.  The site would be fenced off to provide a deterrent for vandals.

Mr Owen pointed out that the solar panel farm would be situated a short distance from Waterside Park’s electric sub-station. The site would be well out of eyesight by members of the public and would be ideal for ground nesting birds that would be reasonably well protected as well as wild flowers.

Nick Martin who is the West Swindon Forum chairman and a councillor felt that the scheme had some merit as it was environmentally friendly, away from the public eye and close to Waterside Park’s electric sub-station. The project was capable of providing a considerable amount of electricity and produce a financial return. The other option would be to plant a number of trees on the site. He did express a view that it would be preferable to also provide some access for members of the public who would benefit by observing all the bird life that was in situ.

We shall wait to hear about any further developments that are no doubt going to be forthcoming in due course about this very interesting scheme that will be communicated to you at the earliest opportunity.

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