Plans emerge for 500MW solar & storage site in the UK

Image: Lightsource.

Following a number of schemes across Europe, in what is generally referred to as the post-subsidy phase of solar farm deployment, potentially the largest solar (and storage) site has now hit the headlines.

The site - located across two sites in the Suffolk and Cambridgeshire regions of Eastern England - appears to be the brainchild of a joint venture between two companies well known to the incentive-based days of UK solar farm build-outs: Padero Solar / Grupo Solaer (including its UK arm PS Renewables) and former employees of greenfield UK solar developer Solar Associates; with the JV branded for this specific development under the aegis of Tribus Energy and the site SPV routing of Sunnica Energy.

For now the JV appears to have engaged the infrastructure design and consulting company AECOM to facilitate initial screening/scoping procedures at the local planning authority level. 

Similar to other large-scale solar farms emerging in the UK post-subsidy, such as the Cleve Hill site, there is bound to be strong engagement from local parties at the screening stages. We can expect also broadsheet and tabloid press coverage to be intense during the coming weeks.

During the past 18 months, the UK has seen over 2.5GW of new solar farm sites being screened in the UK, with former market-leaders Lightsource BP joining the list of speculative developers in the past six months with more than 250MW of capacity at early stages of development including a ~100MW combo site location in the East Midlands.

However, the new Sunnica Solar Farm proposal is by far the largest and most ambitious plan to emerge, and will be covered in more detail in coming weeks on Solar Power Portal.

Full details of all the post-subsidy solar sites under consideration, in addition to the multi-GW of ground-mounted solar farms active at the full planning application phases, can be accessed through our unique UK Large-Scale Solar Farms: The Post-Subsidy Prospect List report, released monthly.