The first project is set to be a 45MW co-located solar and battery storage scheme at Burcot Farm in South Oxfordshire (pictured). Image: PPS.

Public Power Solutions (PPS), Hive Energy and Ethical Power have entered into a co-development agreement, targeting 250MW of solar and storage over the next three years.

The companies will develop, fund, construct and manage the pipeline of large-scale assets, with the first project set to be a 45MW co-located solar and battery storage scheme at Burcot Farm in South Oxfordshire. This project will be submitted for planning permission in early 2022.

PPS – a wholly-owned subsidiary of Swindon Borough Council – will lead on managing project development, whilst collaborating with the other two companies to optimise the sites.

“PPS is looking forward to working with Hive and Ethical to deliver a significant pipeline of solar and storage developments which will make an important contribution to the UK’s plans to decarbonise our energy system,” Bernie Brannan, managing director of PPS said.

“Our partnership will facilitate a consistent approach over the life of our projects and ensure long-term beneficial relationships with the communities which host them.”

Hive Energy acquired a 50% share of Ethical Power Group in November 2020, and the two will take on the construction and long-term management of the projects within the new pipeline. This will include using innovative technologies and operating them to effectively deliver the maximum benefit during their operational lifetime.

The companies have worked together for years, including Ethical Power acting as EPC contractor for Hive Energy’s 13MW School Farm Solar Park near Rugby and 44MW Woodington Solar Park in Hampshire.

Stuart Whiteford, director of Hive-Ethical project developments, said they were delighted to enter into the long-term strategic partnership with PPS.

“By combining our resources we are able to provide a cradle-to-grave service, with a strong focus on early community engagement, ensuring that value is created for the benefit of all invested parties from the outset, and subsequently delivering projects that are capable of being effectively maintained, operated and restored with minimal impact on their environment. It is our ambition that the legacy of each plant is one that we and local communities can be proud of.”

Hive Energy is behind the development of the 350MW Cleve Hill Solar Park, the UK’s largest subsidy-free solar park, which received planning consent in May 2020.