A PLANNING application to put solar panels on a former landfill site in Oswestry will not need a specialist environmental investigation, Shropshire Council says.

The plans for a 2MW ground-mounted solar farm with battery storage on land at the former Maesbury Road site were submitted by the unitary authority in August.

According to a design and access statement submitted with the application, the plan is to help the council's commitment to low carbon energy generation or specifically, to be carbon neutral.

The statement explained why the former landfill site on the Mile Oak Industrial Estate was chosen.

It said: “The site represents the applicant’s commitment to low carbon energy generation and has been selected on the basis of the limited uses for the available land.


“Being a former landfill site, there are limited uses for the site due to the nature of the contaminated land.

“Using the land for a solar farm is therefore a perfect repurposing of the available space.

“Due to the location of the site it is very unlikely that anyone will be affected by the development.”

It added: “The development area is located in an industrial estate where there are no domestic properties in close proximity to the site boundary.

“The proposed solar array will be located towards the centre of the development, on the grass field section.

“This is surrounded by trees and dense vegetation meaning that the site and therefore the proposed solar array will not be visible from outside of the development boundary.”

Adrian Cooper, climate change manager at Shropshire Council, also requested whether an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was necessary given the site’s proximity to Wat’s Dyke.

However, a heritage statement confirmed it would have any impact on the national monument.

It said: “The proposed development would not have a direct physical impact on the Scheduled section of Wat’s Dyke, and will not impact on its setting.

“It is not considered that the development would have an impact on the setting of other heritage assets within the study area.”

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In a reply to Mr Cooper, Shropshire Council’s EIA officer Sara Robinson confirmed that it would not be needed for the application.

She added: “The proposal would result in development that will involve a use considered compatible with the site being within a market town and its former land uses.

“Any issues of concern in relationship to impact it is considered will need to be considered via any necessary mitigation.

“It is acknowledged that impacts identified could occur and that the proposal is for a permanent use and form of development, but nevertheless it is the view of the council that these impacts do not need to be considered as part of an EIA.”