Construction begins on UK’s largest solar farm

Construction has begun on the UK’s largest solar farm, a 41MW installation in West Didcot, Oxfordshire.

When complete in early 2014 the project is expected to generate power for up to 10,000 homes.

Talking to Solar Power Portal, David Dean commercial manager for INRG Solar, the project's developer, said the key to developing the UK’s largest solar farm was “all down to site selection”. The 200-acre, low-grade agriculture site is well away from the road and screened with a three-metre hedge screening. “It’s very secluded, with good grid access,” said Dean.

INRG Solar also engaged with the local community over various community activities and pitched a “very thorough plan”. “We went beyond the call of duty,” said Dean. INRG Solar teamed up with planning consultants, Pegasus Group, to develop a “very detailed planning application” for the 41MW solar farm, he added.

Construction is to begin in January, with the plant expected to be grid connected in March. INRG Solar has further UK projects confirmed for construction in 2015.

The 41MW project supersedes the proposed 40MW project by the Science Museum and Swindon Commercial Services as the UK's largest solar farm.