The proposed Barnsdale Solar Energy Park secured planning approval in 2021. Image: Andreas (unsplash).

Banks Renewables – part of Banks Group – has submitted a proposal to add 40MW of battery storage capacity to its consented 50MW solar farm in Leeds.

Having secured planning approval in 2021, the proposed Barnsdale Solar Energy Park would be made up of 50 hectares of south-facing land based between Kippax and Allerton Bywater, linking directly to the Ledston Primary electricity substation.

After being recommended for approval for the Allerton Bywater and Kippax Parish Councils’ the Barnsdale scheme received unanimous approval from the members of its planning committee.

Included in the plans originally submitted was a biodiversity strategy set to achieve a biodiversity net gain of 107% in what the renewable developer has called “the biggest increase in biodiversity for any renewables projects within Leeds to date”.

Part of the plan’s policy also promised that over £800,000 of revenues generated from the solar park will be directed into a community fins used to provide grants for local community groups and voluntary organisations.

“The benefits of co-locating battery storage capacity alongside solar energy generation facilities in this way are proven and accepted, and having had a great deal of local support for the Barnsdale project, we hope Leeds City Council’s planning committee will be similarly supportive of this application,” said Jamilah Hassan, community relations manager at the Banks Group.

““We’ve been continuing with the technical work required to progress the Barnsdale solar energy park and the submission of this planning application marks the latest landmark on the journey towards the realisation of our plans.

“Adding battery storage to this site will ensure the energy supply can be managed with maximum efficiency and will also reduce energy wastage, which will in turn assist in reducing the cost of energy for consumers.

Banks Group has enjoyed a number of successful planning applications for its solar projects including a 49MW solar farm in South Yorkshire, which was voted in faqvour for by Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council in May this year.