Doncaster, Yorkshire.

Fenwick
Solar Farm.

One Planet. One Chance.

Fenwick Solar Project Limited (a Boom Power company) is proposing a new solar farm with energy storage facilities at Fenwick (the Scheme).

Our statutory consultation is now open and will run until 11.59pm on 31 May 2024.

The Scheme will generate low carbon electricity from solar photovoltaic (PV) panels on land to the east of Fenwick, in the north of the City of Doncaster borough near the town of Askern and the smaller villages of Moss, Topham and Sykehouse. PV modules will generate the electricity and a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) will be installed allowing the storage, export and import of electricity to/from the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS). Work is ongoing to determine how the Scheme will connect to the existing National Grid Thorpe Marsh Substation, whether via underground cables or by connecting directly to an overhead line that passes across the east of the Solar PV Site.The Scheme will deliver enough carbon-free electricity to power approximately 75,000 homes, which is important at a time of increased energy insecurity, and will also contribute to the UK government’s target of reaching a net-zero carbon electricity grid by 2035 and an overall net-zero carbon economy by 2050.Our proposals to generate more renewable power in the UK will make a significant contribution towards the UK meeting its net zero targets and will deliver against Doncaster City Council’s priorities around tackling climate change and generating more electricity from renewable sources.

Hectares of Land

Homes Powered

Net Zero Target

Additional Trees
& Hedgerows
Planted

Creation of
Wildlife
Habitats

Public
Rights of Way
Preserved

STATUTORY CONSULTATION

CONNECTING PEOPLE.

Statutory Consultation: Open from Thursday 18 April 2024 to Friday 31 May 2024

WHY ARE WE CONSULTING?

Boom Power strives to achieve meaningful engagement with local communities and we want to hear your thoughts and ideas for our Scheme. Consultation is an opportunity for both the developer and the community to share information and feedback on the proposed development.

We have prepared a Statement of Community Consultation (SoCC) which explains how we will carry out this consultation. We consulted with the host Local Authority, City of Doncaster Council, on our SoCC. The authority’s comments have helped shape our plans for this consultation.

We held a non-statutory consultation during June and July 2023 as the first step in the consultation process. We presented our initial proposals and sought the views of the community and stakeholders, which has helped us to develop our proposals and designs. The plans presented at this consultation incorporated suggestions and ideas submitted in response to our first consultation.

We have launched a period of statutory consultation as required by the Planning Act 2008, which allows us to present more detailed plans of how the Scheme will be constructed and operated.

We want to hear from the local community, groups, businesses, and statutory stakeholders. We will consider your thoughts and ideas, and where practicable, incorporate them into the final design. Your input is important to us, and all responses received during the consultation period will be considered.

Following this consultation, we will prepare a Consultation Report. This report will form part of our DCO application and will explain how we considered and responded to your feedback.

CONSULTATION EVENTS

We held three in person drop-in consultation events at the following dates, times and locations:

Date and Time.
Location.
Friday 26 April 2024: 2pm – 7pm
Alexander House (Askern Town Hall), High Street, Askern, Doncaster, DN6 0AB
Saturday 27 April 2024: 10am – 3pm
Moss & Fenwick Village Hall, Fenwick Common Lane, Doncaster, DN6 0HG
Monday 29 April 2024: 2pm – 7pm
Sykehouse Village Hall, Off Broad Lane, Sykehouse, Goole, DN14 9AS

We also hosted an online webinar event via Microsoft Teams Live on Wednesday 8 May 2024.

Responses to questions submitted to the live webinar can be found here – Fenwick Webinar Questions and Answers.

You can watch a recording of the webinar by clicking the following link – Fenwick Consultation Webinar.

Thank you to everyone who attended the Fenwick Solar Farm in-person and online statutory consultation events over the past few weeks. If you have any questions regarding our consultation, please contact us at: fenwick.enquiries@boom-power.co.uk

Please note that the questions received from attendees both prior to and during the sessions are not being considered as formal feedback. You can let us know your thoughts on our plans through the response channels detailed below. Our consultation closes at 23:59 on 31 May 2024. We look forward to hearing from you.

CONSULTATION MATERIAL

All documents that have been produced for the consultation which explain more about our proposals and can be found in our documentation library, key documents include:

  • Consultation brochure
  • Consultation feedback form
  • Plans of the proposed Solar PV Site and Grid Connection Corridor
  • Statement of Community Consultation (SoCC)
  • Non-Statutory Consultation Report
  • Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR)
  • PEIR Non-Technical Summary (NTS)

You can also view hard copies of consultation documents (with the exception of the PEIR), free of charge, at several document inspection points.

USBs containing digital copies of all consultation materials (including the PEIR) are also available at the document inspection venues for inspection at the libraries or removal free of charge for reading at your own convenience. The contents of the USBs may be inspected on computers on the project website or on the USB sticks at Askern Community Library, Snaith Library, Thorne Library and Edenthorpe Community Library.

You can also request hard copy consultation materials, or copies of the consultation materials on USB sticks, by contacting us via the details in the “Have your say” section of this website, or the form within the “Contact us” section of this website.

DOCUMENT INSPECTION VENUES

Copies of the consultation documents are available to view throughout the consultation period at the document inspection venues listed below. Please note that opening times of these venues may be subject to change. Please check with the venue before attending.

Document inspection point.
Address.
Opening hours (correct at the time of publication, however, please check with the venue before attending) .
Askern Community Library
Station Rd, Askern, Doncaster DN6 0LA
Monday – Saturday: 10am – 1pm
Edenthorpe Community Library
Communal Hall, Bardon Road, Edenthorpe, Doncaster, DN3 2ND
Monday: 2pm – 5pm. Wednesday: 9.30am – 12.30pm. Friday: 2pm. – 5pm. Saturday: 10am – 12pm.
Snaith Library
27 Market Place, Snaith, Goole DN14 9HE
Tuesday: 2pm – 6pm. Thursday: 10am – 4pm. Saturday: 10am – 12pm.
Thorne Library
The Vermuyden Centre, Field Side, Thorne, Doncaster DN8 4BQ
Monday – Friday: 8.40am – 1pm and  1.30pm – 5pm. Saturday: 8.40am – 1pm.
The Baxter Arms
Fenwick, Fenwick Lane, Doncaster, DNH 0HA
Monday – Wednesday: 4pm – 11pm. Thursday – Sunday: 12 – 11pm.
The Old George Inn
Broad Lane, Sykehouse, DN14 9AU
Daily: 9:30 – Late  (approx. 10pm).
Non Statutory Consultation (Closed)

WHY ARE WE CONSULTING?

- The non-statutory consultation period is now closed - 

Meaningful engagement with the local community is what we at Boom Power strive to achieve and we want to hear your thoughts and ideas. Consultation is an opportunity for both the developer and the community to share information and feedback on a proposed development.

At this stage of the process, we are commencing our engagement with local authorities and other agencies, as well as presenting our initial proposals and seeking the views of the local community and stakeholders. Communities have a vital role to play in this process, and we want to hear your views. Your feedback will help us to develop our designs ahead of a statutory consultation period planned to take place later this year.

Your input is important to us, and all responses received during the consultation period will be considered.

The consultation period ran from Tuesday 27 June 2023 to 23:59 on Monday 24 July 2023. This is now closed.

Consultation Events.

Two consultation events were held at venues across the local area between 27th June 2023 and 24th July 2023. These were drop-in sessions where you could meet members of the project team, view information and plans, and ask any questions you had. Thank you to everyone who attended.

Date & Time.

Location.

Friday 30 June 2023, 14:00 – 20:00
Fenwick and Moss Village Hall, Fenwick Common Lane, Fenwick, Doncaster, DN6 0HG
Wednesday 5 July 2023, 14:00 – 20:00
The Old George Inn, Broad Lane, Sykehouse, DN14 9AU

Webinars.

We understand that not everyone was able to come to an event in person. Therefore, we held two webinars. Thank you to everyone who tuned in, if you missed this, please use the below links to watch the live webinar recording.

Date & Time.

Watch recording here.

Proposal

For a Greener Tomorrow.

The boundary shown on the proposed site map illustrates all the land that may form the Scheme – a proposed land area of 536 hectares (ha) for the total scheme (421 for Solar PV Site and 115 for Grid Connection Corridor).

Not all land within the boundary will be developed. Some will be set aside as buffer zones from the field’s edge to the nearest panels. Some areas will be set aside for environmental mitigation, including planting and creation of wildlife habitats. Existing public rights of way in these fields will be preserved, but with some temporary diversions put in place in certain areas.

There will be spaces of at least fifteen metres between the centre of the paths and the solar farm fences. Solar panels will be located a further five metres from the fence into the fields. Existing trees and hedgerows will provide visual screening and maintain ecological habitats. This will be further improved by allowing hedgerows to grow taller and closing any gaps between hedgerows to aid screen, and also by planting new hedgerows, shrubs and trees.

Solar PV panels would be mounted on fixed metal mounting structures arranged in rows facing south. Fixed south facing systems are the most commonly seen layout for utility scale solar PV facilities in the UK to date.

A maximum of 28 field stations will be distributed around the solar farm amongst the panels and will all be at a distance of at least 250 m from residential properties. These will contain electrical equipment such as inverters, switchgear and a transformer typically housed in shipping containers and externally finished in keeping with the surroundings. There will be up to four such units per field station.

Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) will be used at the solar farm to allow any excess generated electricity to be stored, exported and imported to NETS when demand is high. The batteries, likely housed within shipping container-style units, will be located within the BESS Area at a distance greater than 500 m from residential properties and greater than 80 m from Public Rights of Way to reduce visibility.

The field stations and the BESS will connect via underground cables to the On-Site Substation. The maximum height of the On-Site Substation structures will be 13 m, although most equipment will be at a lower level than this. It will also contain a control building which will be approximately 20 m in length, 20 m width and 6 m height, and will also contain welfare facilities.

The On-Site Substation will connect via underground cable to the existing National Grid Thorpe Marsh Substation, if that is the option used for our grid connection. Another option being currently explored is to connect the On-Site Substation to existing overhead power lines within the Solar PV Site.

We will seek to minimise the removal of trees and hedgerows for cable connections, security fencing or access requirements across the different landholdings as far as reasonably practicable. Following construction, a programme of site reinstatement and habitat creation and enhancement would take place. We will plant additional trees and hedgerows to enhance the screening of the solar farm from view and improve local habitats.

Stock proof mesh fencing will be erected around the solar PV areas at a height of up to 2.2 m. There will be a minimum of a 5 m buffer between the field boundary and the fence line. The solar PV panels will be sited at least a further 5 m inside the fence line.

Construction and deliveries will be governed by a construction traffic management plan and agreed with the local authority prior to any work starting.

The core construction working hours are defined as:

  • Monday to Friday from 07.00 to 19.00 (daylight hours permitting);
  • Saturday from 07.00 to 13.00 (daylight hours permitting); and
  • No Sunday or Bank Holiday working unless crucial to construction (for example for Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) which must be a continuous activity) or in an emergency.

Emergency working may extend beyond the timescales quoted above.

Working hours would be shortened if working would necessitate artificial lighting and, therefore, the working day would be shorter in the months with reduced daylight hours. It is not possible to avoid working over winter due to the length of the construction programme. However, cabling and groundworks would be prioritised during the drier summer months where practicable.

As an exceptional activity, Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) may require 24-hour working, for example to cross the Thorpe Marsh Drain flood defence crossing. 24-hour working is to be agreed in advance with the relevant Local Planning Authority (City of Doncaster Council).

Noisy work near residential properties, such as use of power tools, would be limited to between 08.00 and 18.00 from Monday to Friday and 08.00 to 13.00 on Saturdays.

Additionally, quiet non-intrusive works using electric hand tools only, such as the installation of Solar PV Panels may take place over longer periods during the summer and other quiet non-intrusive works such as electrical testing, commissioning and inspection may take place over longer periods throughout the year.

Proposed Site Maps.

Indicative layout for purposes of forming the Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR).

FIGURE 1 OF 6
FIGURE 2 OF 6
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FIGURE 6 OF 6

LOCATION – why here?

HARVESTING ENERGY IN BALANCE WITH NATURE.

SUNLIGHT AND TOPOGRAPHY.

The Doncaster and Yorkshire area climate provides a suitable area for solar development. It provides good levels of sunshine along with days that are cool and clear, maximising the efficiency of the solar modules.

The land at Fenwick is flat – ideal conditions for the installation of solar PV panels as this allows for reduced technical complexity during construction, with the added benefit of existing hedgerows supplying much of the visual screening. Flat land also limits the shading between solar PV panels.

PROXIMITY OF A SITE TO DWELLINGS .

The Scheme is situated in a rural area. Our design will work to place the PV modules and BESS where they are less visible from nearby homes and use hedgerows and other natural barriers to provide screening. We are committed to designing the Scheme sensitively to limit the impact to local residents

AGRICULTURE LAND CLASSIFICATION AND LAND TYPE.

Available data indicates that the land at Fenwick is lower grade agricultural land, enabling the Scheme to minimise impacts on ‘best and most versatile’ agricultural land.

ACCESSIBILITY.

The Fenwick site is sufficiently served by road to enable the components of the solar farm to be delivered to the Site.

GRID CONNECTION.

The site is in sufficient proximity to the existing National Grid Thorpe Marsh Substation, approximately 6 km south, which is where the electricity generated by the Site will feed into the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS). The National Grid is well developed in the area and has capacity for new energy generation facilities.

DIVERSIFYING FARMING.

We recognise that the solar farm will be located on agricultural land. We are exploring the option of farming sheep in the fields beneath the panels. Sheep grazing on solar farms has been successful elsewhere in the UK and has been shown to have benefits for soil health and natural biodiversity. Sheep can move safely between and under the panels and can use them to rest in the shade or shelter from rain. The grass beneath solar panels also grows well enough to all the nutrients that the sheep need from grazing on it. Should consent be granted, grazing by sheep will be explored, noting that there are no known landowner restrictive covenants or other reasons that would prevent such use.

CONSTRUCTION & OPERATION

BUILDING CLIMATE RESILIENCE.

HOW WILL THE SOLAR FARM BE BUILT?

Most of the construction work will consist of putting up a simple metal frame to which the solar PV panels will be attached. A site will be first fenced off, then metal poles will be driven into the ground using a post driver. The metal frame will be attached to the poles, and the solar PV panels will be attached to the frame. Inverters could then be mounted to the frame to create the electrical connection to the cables, or they could be centrally located within the field stations.

Separately to the installation of the solar PV panels, we will install the cables, field stations, BESS and the On-Site Substation. Once these are all connected, electricity will be generated by the solar PV panels and will flow into the National Grid or be stored in the BESS.

HOW WILL EVERYTHING BE TRANSPORTED DURING CONSTRUCTION?

Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) will bring most construction materials to the Solar PV, with tractors and trailers used to bring materials to the Grid Connection Corridor construction compounds. All HGVs will travel via the A19, then along Moss Road before accessing the Solar PV construction compound.  There will be a maximum of five Abnormal Indivisible Loads (AILs) for delivery of the substation transformers.   From the compounds, tractors and trailers will be used to cross fields rather than roads to distribute these materials to their specific site.

Different stages of construction will need different numbers of HGV deliveries. The routes to be used and timings for deliveries and staff will be set out in a Construction Traffic Management Plan. The Framework Construction Traffic Management Plan will be submitted with the DCO application.  A road condition survey will be carried out on local roads identified ahead of construction starting. Where necessary, these roads will be repaired to the same or better standard once the solar farm is complete. Where new passing places are installed so that existing traffic can continue to move clearly, they will be left in place for the long-term benefit of the community. You can find out more about construction and operational traffic in the PEIR Volume I Chapter 13: Transport and Access.

HOW LONG WILL THE SOLAR FARM TAKE TO BUILD?

We anticipate that construction of the Grid Connection Cables will last for around 12 months, and the Solar PV Site (including on-site substation and BESS) will take approximately 24 months. The construction will be phased across the site, so we will not work in all areas at once during this period.

WILL PUBLIC RIGHTS OF WAY  BE AFFECTED?

No Public Rights of Way (PRoW) will be permanently closed up as a result of our works on the Scheme. The footpath Public Right of Way Sykehouse 29, which runs immediately south of Bunfold Shaw, will however be permanently diverted. The diversion will run approximately 50 m south of the existing PRoW, through the same field during the construction and operation and maintenance phases. The permanent diversion will follow the path that we understand residents typically use. Consultation carried out with local residents during the previous round of consultation, as well as engagement carried out with the council, confirmed that most users of the PRoW do not currently follow the existing mapped route, and instead follow the route which is designed as the permanent diversion for the Scheme.  The routes of some PRoW may be slightly altered for a short time while we install cables across these paths, however no PRoW will be permanently closed.

WHAT ONGOING MAINTENANCE WILL BE NEEDED?

Once the solar farm is constructed and fully commissioned, the operational phase will begin. The design life of the Scheme is 40 years from the final commissioning, and is currently anticipated to be 2030 to 2070.  In general, operation and maintenance of the solar farm will involve vegetation management, regular inspection of the fences, and monitoring of the operational equipment to ensure the continued effective operation of the Scheme. CCTV will be mounted inside of the perimeter fences on separate poles, which will face along the fence and inwards only. In the UK climate, Solar PV Panels are largely self-cleaning. Some sites can operate without the need to be cleaned, whereas some sites require cleaning every two years. Where additional cleaning is needed this will be done with a large water brush, similar to the kind found in many car washes, mounted on a tractor.

Design Principles

Scheme Design Evolution.

Following our non-consultation in June and July 2023 we have further developed and refined our proposals to take account of feedback received at the consultation, ongoing environmental surveys, and discussions with stakeholders

The changes include:

  • Additional land has been incorporated into the proposed Solar PV Site in order to provide additional flexibility and to accommodate additional areas for environmental mitigation;
  • Refinement of the Grid Connection Corridor to a much narrower route;
  • Confirmation that the scheme will use fixed south facing solar PV panels and not fixed east-west facing panels which require a far greater ground cover ratio or tracking panels which could be taller and require increased land space; and
  • Refinement of the proposals for BESS so that they would be located in a single area within the Solar PV Site and greater than 500 m from any residential property.

The design of the project will continue to be developed and refined following this statutory consultation. The ongoing design process will be guided by the vision and series of design principles.

We have also extended the red line boundary of the scheme to include the High Street and Station Road junction in Askern. This is to allow construction vehicles access to the Solar PV Site via the A19, Station Road and Moss Road, as vehicles will need to navigate the signalised junction in Askern.

VISION

The Scheme will be a responsible neighbour that is situated sensitively within its surroundings, seeking to maximise biodiversity whilst mitigating environmental impact. The project will help to meet the urgent need fora secure, affordable and decarbonised UK electricity system by providing reliable, low-cost energy, contributing significantly to energy production and addressing the causes of climate change.

CLIMATE.

  • Efficiently generate a large amount of renewable energy for supply to the National Electricity Transmission System, maximising use of the available grid connection capacity, and contribute towards the UK meeting its net zero targets.
  • Minimise embodied carbon by selecting low-carbon materials where practicable, utilising efficient designs and implementing sustainable practices throughout construction, operation and maintenance and decommissioning.
  • Ensure the Scheme is designed to be resilient to future climate change.

PEOPLE.

  • Demonstrate considerate neighbourly conduct during the construction, operational and decommissioning phases of the Scheme.
  • Embrace open and transparent interactions with nearby communities, stakeholders, and residents, leveraging their local insights to mitigate and enhance the Scheme.
  • Maintain existing levels of public right of way connectivity through and across the site and enhance routes within the Order limits, where practicable.

PLACE.

  • Seek to establish spaces that can serve for energy generation, biodiversity improvement, water and flood control, and green infrastructure.
  • Seek to safeguard the water environment and be resilient from flooding both now and in the future.
  • Site the Scheme sensitively in the landscape, respecting the distinctive and unique character of settlements adjacent to the site and the surrounding countryside and exploring reasonable opportunities to mitigate visual impacts.
  • Develop the Scheme sensitively with regard to cultural heritage assets and their settings.

VALUE.

  • Acknowledge the ever-changing and progressing state of technology and strive to use current and advanced options to optimise efficiency.
  • Seek opportunities for local communities and businesses to benefit economically through promoting employment opportunities locally and opportunities for local business to tender to supply services in delivery of the Scheme.

MASTERPLAN

Indicative Masterplan.

This indicative masterplan is for the purposes of statutory consultation. This masterplan is subject to change following the feedback received, further environmental assessment and design development.

ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS & MITIGATION

NET ZERO BY 2050.

Solar power is affordable, reliable, and low impact. In 2021 solar farms supplied more than 4% of the UK’s entire electricity demand. The government has set a target for 70 Gigawatts of our power to be generated from solar by 2035: a five-fold increase on existing targets. According to the UN, climate change is the ‘defining crisis of our time and it is happening even more quickly than we feared’ – we need to create more renewable power.

We recognise the importance of environmental protection and betterment as part of our commitment to operating sustainably and responsibly. We procure independent qualified ecologist advice to measure the biodiversity value of each project and to design enhancements to deliver net biodiversity gain. At our solar farms, this generally results in improvements to natural habitats for a range of invertebrates, small mammals, reptiles and birds. Currently the majority of the land at Fenwick is used for arable and pasture purposes which gives opportunities to boost biodiversity through the function of the solar farm.

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process to systematically analyse the likely significant environmental effects of the Scheme and develop effective mitigation measures. Our preliminary findings and mitigation proposals are detailed in the Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR) which forms part of this statutory consultation. Key topics where we the potential for significant effects, and mitigation measures are shown in the table below. You can find more information on the environmental impacts and proposed mitigations in the Statutory Consultation Brochure, PEIR or PEIR Non-Technical Summary.

As a result of the below mitigation measures being applied, no significant effects are anticipated in the areas outlined above. Further information on all the environmental impacts and proposed mitigations can be found in the PEIR within the documentation library.

TOPIC.
PROPOSED MEASURES TO REDUCE EFFECT.
Climate change
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 6: Climate Change
The overall impact of the solar farm is expected to be significantly beneficial as it will produce low-carbon electricity, helping the UK achieve its target of net zero by 2050 by removing dependency on gas fired power stations. Greenhouse gas emissions resulting from constructing the solar farm due to material mining, energy and fuel use, and transport, are small compared to the benefits the solar farm will bring. Future climate conditions will be taken into account when developing the detailed design of the solar farm.
Landscape and Visual Amenity
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 10: Landscape and Visual Amenity

One of the design aims is to sensitively integrate the solar farm into the local landscape. New structural vegetation will be planted to reinforce and complement the existing network of hedgerows and trees across the Site. This will help to screen solar PV panels, BESS and electrical equipment from view, as well as enhance wildlife connections across the Site. PV panels and other elements of the solar farm, including the BESS, will be set back from properties and Public Rights of Way, and screened using vegetation where possible.

During the construction period and the first few years of operation, planting proposed as part of the scheme would be yet to be fully established, meaning some receptors may be visible. Where receptors are screened by proposed planting the visual effects of the Scheme would decrease over time as most views become filtered and eventually screened by vegetation.

Glint and glare will be minimised by using anti-reflective coating on the solar PV panels. Together with the screening planting, glint and glare impacts have been considered and mitigated where necessary.

Agricultural land
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 12: Socio-Economics and Land Use

The site for the solar farm has been selected and designed to minimise the impacts on Best and Most Versatile (BMV) agricultural land; and research and field surveys confirm that the majority of the land is non-BMV.

The soil beneath the solar panels does not need to be lifted to install the panels so the soil profile will not be disturbed. The physical footprint of the solar farm components which require foundations or hard-standing, such as field stations, on-site substations and access tracks, makes up a small proportion of the solar farm area, which means the soil disturbance will be minimal.

The change from arable agriculture to grassland is temporary as the land can be returned to arable farming upon decommissioning of the solar farm. The temporary shift from arable to grassland is predicted to result in positive changes to soil structure and soil carbon content. The change of agricultural land into wildlife habitat is likely to lead to significant benefits to ecology.

The land within cable corridors will be reinstated after construction and will remain available for normal agricultural use.

Traffic, access to open space and active travel
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 13: Transport and Access, PEIR Volume 1

The main impact on traffic and transport is likely to be from staff vehicles and HGVs during construction. The movement of construction traffic can also reduce pedestrian amenity and deter the local residents from active travel.

To address this, the routes to be used and timings for deliveries and staff will be defined in a Construction Traffic Management Plan (CTMP) before construction begins, and all construction staff will adhere to this. The Public Right of Way network will remain largely unaffected during construction. We will however, require one permanent Public Rights of Way diversion (Sykehouse 29). The permanent diversion will follow the path that we understand residents typically use, as gathered from previous consultation of the public, and engagement with the council.

As the operational solar farm requires little maintenance there will be limited traffic during operation.

Noise and vibration
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 11: Noise and Vibration, PEIR Volume 2

Measures laid out within the Construction Environmental Management Plan like careful positioning of noisy machinery away from residential properties, regular noise monitoring, notifying local residents of any noisy works and adhering to the agreed working hours will help reduce the noise effects on the local residents during construction.

Noise modelling results suggest that the operational solar farm will not significantly change the noise baseline for the local residential receptors. This is achieved by locating the electrical equipment such as the on-site substations, BESS and field stations away from receptors.

Ecology
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 8: Ecology

The design of the Scheme avoids all sites statutorily designated for their biodiversity value and avoids, or seeks to minimise, impacts on sites that are non-statutorily designated for their biodiversity value. Measures embedded within the Scheme design ensure that designated sites are not adversely impacted during construction, operation or decommissioning e.g. through site construction routes away from designated sites, incorporating suitable buffer zones and erection of temporary construction fencing to avoid incursion into exclusion zones. Furthermore, an Ecological Clerk of Works (ECoW) will oversee works, as necessary, to ensure embedded mitigation measures are implemented.

The Scheme has also been designed to avoid key nature conservation and ecological features present within or adjacent to the Site. A number of buffers from key ecological features will be adhered to, and these can be read in further detail in Chapter 9 of the PEIR.

Additionally, a Framework CEMP (included as PEIR Volume I Appendix 2-1: Construction Environmental Management Plan) outlines the good practice measures that will be implemented during construction of the Scheme to mitigate construction-related effects on biodiversity associated with dust deposition, air pollution, pollution incidents, water quality, light, noise and vibration.

Water environment
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 9: Water Environment

We have assessed the likely significant effects of the Scheme on the water environment. The water environment includes surface water bodies (e.g. rivers and streams), groundwater bodies, as well as flood risk and drainage.

Embedded mitigation in the design, the implementation of good practice during construction, and the implementation of a Surface Water Drainage Strategy to minimise flood risk will be implemented to minimise adverse effect on the water environment. The Surface Water Drainage Strategy, which is set out in PEIR Volume I Chapter 9: Water Environment, has been developed to mimic natural drainage as far as practicable using Sustainable Drainage Systems, and to provide a number of other benefits to ecological habitat creation.

The design of the Scheme will take account of the flood risk in the area. The majority of the south and west areas of the Solar PV Site are located within Flood Zone 1 (low risk). The north and east areas of the Solar PV Sire are located within Flood Zone 2 (medium risk) and Flood Zone 3 (high risk). The areas of the site shown to be at high risk flooding benefit from the presence of flood defences.

The heights of solar PV panels and equipment foundations, including the BESS, will be enough to avoid them being affected by flooding. The Scheme will not increase flood risk outside of the site.

Through the use of embedded mitigation, there would be no significant effects on the water environment from the Scheme.

Cultural heritage
PEIR Volume I
Chapter 7: Cultural Heritage

The location and the layout of the solar farm minimises impacts on designated cultural heritage assets and their settings, such as scheduled monuments, listed buildings and conservation areas, and on non-designated assets, such as historic buildings and landscape, and archaeological remains.

Archaeological surveys are ongoing. The results of field surveys will identify the location of buried archaeological remains and allow the solar farm to be designed around them. Where avoiding archaeology is not practicable, appropriate archaeological mitigation, such as excavation, will be undertaken to ensure remains are fully understood and recorded.

COMPONENTS OF A SOLAR FARM

HARNESSING THE SUN.

SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC (PV) PANELS

Solar PV panels are made up of multiple PV cells which convert sunlight into Direct Current (DC) electricity.  Fixed south facing panels are proposed at the Scheme. 

INVERTERS

Inverters are used to convert the DC electricity generated from the solar PV panels into Alternating Current (AC) – the type of electricity we use in our homes. AC is used for the transmission and distribution networks across the UK. 

TRANSFORMERS

Transformers change the voltage of the electricity generated which makes it more efficient to move over longer distances. The transformers ensure that the voltage of the energy generated is matched to the voltage of the National Grid for transmission and distribution around the UK. 

SWITCHGEAR

The switchgear allows the electrical components to be de-energised and isolated automatically by the protection systems or operated manually to allow for safe routine maintenance.  

BATTERIES

Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) are an industry standard system for storing excess electricity generated by the solar farm or available in the grid. Stored electricity can be released to meet peak energy demands. BESS components are typically housed in shipping container-style units.  

FIELD STATIONS

Equipment such as inverters, transformers and switchgear, typically housed in standard shipping containers, will be grouped together within areas called field stations.  

ON-SITE SUBSTATION

Substations are used to safely collect, transform and transmit the energy exported from the site to the National Electricity Transmission System (NETS).

National Electricity Transmission System  
The NETS is the official term for the National Grid. NETS is used for the transmission of electricity from one generating station to a substation or to another generating station or between substations or to or from any interconnector.

BENEFITS

DIVERSIFY FARMING.

We are exploring an option to use the land under the solar panels for sheep grazing and have designed the solar farm to make this possible. Sheep grazing can help to diversify farming in the area, adding an additional income stream for farmers.

Compared to arable farming, solar farms can result in a biodiversity net gain by providing an overall increase in natural habitat and ecological features. Whilst there is an initial change to the countryside, the operational solar farm can fast become a haven for wildlife.

The construction of the solar farm will present opportunities for local employment and will indirectly support local businesses such as shops, petrol stations and hotels. 

We want local people to share in the benefits that the solar farm can bring. The electricity generated will transfer directly into the National Grid, so cannot be used to directly reduce bills for local people. However, a proportion of the expected money made by the solar farm will be invested into the local community. The project will also generate substantial business rates for Doncaster City Council, providing a significant source of income for the council to redistribute as it sees fit for the benefit of the local community. 

We are exploring the use of a community benefit fund, and our aim would be to work with local organisations that will best spend the money to support the community. You can help identify potential recipients for this by letting us know of local causes and organisations as part of your response to this consultation.

DEVELOPMENT CONSENT ORDER (dco) PROCESS

SHAPING THE FUTURE.

As the electricity generating capacity of the Scheme is greater than 50 MW, it is classified as an NSIP. NSIPs are large infrastructure developments which are considered important to the entire country and require consent by way of a DCO for them to be built. 

Unlike local planning applications, which are considered by local authorities, DCO applications are made to the Secretary of State and handled by the Planning Inspectorate. In the case of a solar farm, the final decision on a DCO application is made by the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero. The post submission timeline is shown to the right. 

Local Authorities are among the many bodies invited to respond to the consultation on the DCO application, along with environmental and heritage bodies and the local community and stakeholders. Feedback from this consultation will be documented in the Consultation Report, along with details on how we have had regard to that feedback, which will be submitted with our DCO application. 

We plan to submit our DCO application later in 2024, following consideration of all responses to this consultation. Once the application has been submitted the Planning Inspectorate have 28 days to decide if the application meets the standards required to be accepted for examination. The Planning Inspectorate will then appoint an Examining Authority, and the Pre-examination period takes place to enable all parties to plan and prepare for the examination. 

The examination will take a maximum of six months. The Planning Inspectorate will then have three months to prepare a recommendation to the Secretary of State who then has a further three months to make the decision on whether to grant or refuse the DCO. 

If our DCO application is accepted for examination, you can register directly with the Planning Inspectorate to become an Interested Party. During examination the Planning Inspectorate will keep Interested Parties informed about the progress of our application, and how they can get involved in the examination. 

HAVE YOUR SAY

YOUR OPINION MATTERS.

Your opinion matters, and every response to this consultation will be considered, evaluated, and used to develop our final design. The consultation report will be published on our website and submitted as part of our Application for a Development Consent Order later in the year.

You can share your thoughts by completing our feedback form online using the button below or alternatively, you can email your views to us at Fenwick.Enquiries@boom-power.co.uk

You can also print a copy of our feedback form, or send a free form response, and post it to ‘FREEPOST FENWICK SOLAR FARM’ or bring it to one of our consultation events, where our project team will collect your feedback.

If you have any questions or would like to request copies of information (including in accessible formats if needed) please contact us using the general contact form button.

The consultation closes at 11:59pm on 31 May 2024. All responses received before this will be considered and summarised in our consultation report. Responses received after this time may not be considered.

FENWICK SOLAR FARM

Documentation Library.

If you have any questions or would like to request copies of this information (including in accessible formats if needed) please contact us. 

All documents are in a PDF format.

Consultation Brochure
Non-Statutory Consultation Report
PEIR Non-Technical Summary
Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR) | Volume II Figures
Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR) | Volume III Appendices
Statement of Community Consultation (SoCC)
WEBINAR RECORDING AND Q&A | 8TH MAY 2024

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