The solar farm is to be located on a former landfill site. Image: Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust.

A new solar farm which will be linked with Torbay Hospital in Devon to support its plans to become carbon neutral has been approved by Torbay Council.

The £3.1 million project is to be located at Nightingale Park, a former landfill site which was in use from the 1950s to the 1980s. It is to provide 3.2MWp of power, with the solar panels to cover around 3.9 hectares within a secure fenced area.

Renewable energy from the site is to be fed to the hospital by an underground cable.

The project will also see more hedgerows put in place to boost existing wildlife, while improvements to footpaths around the Nightingale Park will be made and excerise equipment put in for members of the public to use.

Councillor Swithin Long, cabinet member for economic regeneration, tourism and housing at Torbay Council, said the council declared a climate emergency in 2019 and committed to creating a carbon neutral community by 2030, with one of the key ways of doing this being changing the way homes and businesses are powered.

“Assisting Torbay Hospital with power generated by these solar panels means it will become one of the greenest hospitals in the country,” Long said.

It follows the announcement earlier this week that a solar PV farm in Cottingham, Yorkshire is now completely powering the Castle Hill Hospital as a result of the clocks going forward. The solar farm is now generating around 26MWh per day, with this anticipated to rise to a peak summer load of 50MWh per day.

Other solar PV projects for hospitals include a solar farm which entered construction in February that is set to feed power directly to New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton, as well as rooftop solar installed by Centrica Business Solutions for Hereford County Hospital.