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Largest UK Solar Farm Built

It was only a couple of weeks ago that we reported on the largest solar farm being built in the world in the USA. Now we have heard of the biggest solar farm being completed here in the UK and being connected to the National Grid.

Solar farms should help the UK achieve its renewable energy target – Image credit: Michael Mees.

The solar farm is called Landmead and is located in the Oxfordshire countryside at Landmead Farm, East Hanney that is close to Abingdon. It has been developed jointly between First Solar and Belectric UK.

The 483,000 solar panels cover an extensive area of around 80 hectare. Its capacity is about 45MW and it is capable of providing sufficient power for around 14,000 domestic properties so this should go some way towards helping the UK achieve its renewable energy targets. In fact, it is estimated that in the region of 20 million kilograms of CO2 emissions will be removed from the atmosphere each year.

The ground-mounted solar panels have been constructed on grade 3 agricultural land that, apparently, is not suited for growing crops on it. The land is presently used for grazing sheep and the great thing is that the sheep will continue to carry on doing this.

Another benefit is that as the solar panels are no more than 2.2 metres high any cars driving past the solar farm will not even notice the solar panels as they are hidden behind hedges. Wildflowers are also to be planted on the site.

Back in December 2014, Foresight Solar Fund entered into a binding agreement to acquire the Landmead solar farm.

Landmead’s claim to fame could be somewhat short-lived as an even bigger solar farm is expected to be built this year in Norfolk. It is expected to have a capacity of around 49.9MW.

It will be interesting to monitor the possible development of future soar farms as there has been some opposition last year to their construction. Roof-mounted solar panels seem to be the favoured choice these days.

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