A 120-acre solar farm could be built in Alfreton fields

The proposed site for the solar farm
The proposed site for the solar farm

A huge 120-acre solar farm could be built in fields to the north of Alfreton.

The proposed development, submitted by Bavarian firm Vento Ludens, would cover an area the size of 60 football pitches east of Chesterfield Road to the north of the town.

If approved, the solar farm would sit on vacant fields east of the sewage treatment works, west of the train line and a commercial explosives firm and north of the Meadow Lane Industrial Estate.

Renewable energy firm Vento Ludens was established in 1996 and has hydro schemes and wind farms in Scotland. It has submitted an environmental impact assessment screening to Amber Valley Borough Council ahead of a formal planning application.

Plans submitted by Neo Environmental on behalf of the applicants say that the solar panels would be mounted no higher than three metres off the ground.

A new access route off Chesterfield Road would be formed as part of the plans, along with CCTV cameras and infrastructure works required for the scheme’s operation. Public rights of way through parts of the site would be maintained.

The firm’s plans have not revealed how long it seeks to use the site for but solar farms typically seek long periods of use spanning several decades.

It has also not yet revealed how much energy could be produced from the proposed solar farm, each year or over its lifespan.

Its plans say: “It has been concluded from the assessments of the proposed development that the environmental impacts will not be significant and therefore no significant residual effects are identified.

“The location of the proposed development has been carefully chosen to reduce any potential effects by being sited at a significant distance from any landscape, environmental or ecological designations. 

“The proposed solar farm is expected to have some limited visibility from some residents within the rural area and surrounding settlements as well as road and railway users. 

“The greatest potential views will be from walkers on the public rights of way through and bordering the application site, but overall residual landscape effects will not be significant.”