Plans for an 800-acre solar farm off the Thanet Way have been deferred by Canterbury City Council’s planning committee. The solar panels would have provided enough electricity to power 15.000 homes in the area, and would have been located to the south side of the A299 by the Share and Coulter pub. It had been put forward by Owls Hatch Solar Farm Ltd, but council officials recommended refusing the plans because of concerns about the impact on the appearance and character of the countryside. Officer David Campbell told committee members that the development would be unnecessarily harmful if it was accepted, and said alternative sites should be explored. The Campaign to Protect Rural England believes the possibility of developing the farm on a brownfield site should be explored first, and that good agricultural land could be lost if the scheme is approved. Owls Hatch Solar Farm Ltd will now investigate ways to provide better screening of the panels to protect countryside views.
Herne Bay Gazette, December 11th 2014