Bringing the most recent total to seven, Birmingham-based electrical services contractor JT Hawkes has announced the completion of the 5MW large-scale solar project at Westmill Solar Farm in Swindon. The 30-acre plant, which was completed in just six weeks, will supply renewable energy to 1,500 homes in Oxfordshire over the next 25 years.

By completing the project before Government’s August 1 fast-track feed-in tariff deadline the Westmill farm will benefit from the higher incentive rate.

Working with German photovoltaic panel supplier Abakus on the £12 million solar farm for clients Blue Energy and Low Carbon Solar JT Hawkes installed ~23,000 photovoltaic solar panels on site.  The panels have been mounted at a height of three metres on 68 kilometres of steel and are expected to feed almost 5GW of solar electricity a year into the national grid.

Mark Wells, Head of Design & Delivery for Low Carbon Solar said, “This project has been delivered at record speed and with challenges both large and small but a constant throughout has been the support of JT Hawkes.”

Mark Edworthy, Commercial Director for Blue Energy commented, “We were delighted with the dedication, efficiency and teamwork demonstrated by the JT Hawkes team. They ensured that the project was delivered under extreme time pressure.”

John Hawkes, Managing Director of JT Hawkes said, “Our engineers rose to the challenge of using the latest technology to complete Britain's largest solar power plant – and worked round the clock to get it finished in such a short period of time. We are delighted to be part of such a landmark scheme.”

Local people will have the opportunity to take ownership of the farm later this year when shares are offered by the recently formed Westmill Solar Co-operative.