There is widespread support for the development of one of the country’s biggest solar energy parks on an old airfield close to Fakenham, it has been said.
Good Energy has submitted an application to build the park on 225 acres at the former RAF West Raynham.
David Siddle, West Raynham Parish Council chairman, said: “I haven’t heard anybody in the village have a bad word about it.
“Of the proposals put forward for the land, which have included a wind farm and there was even talk about a prison, this is the best option.
“It is far enough away from housing that it’s not going to be seen and it is quiet.”
The airfield has been disused for almost 20 years and the land is badly contaminated.
Good Energy says the park would generate enough electricity to supply around 11,287 homes.
If approved the company will make contributions of £25,000 a year towards community projects for the 30-year lifespan of the park.
Projects already earmarked include a new children’s play area at The Kiptons – a growing community on the edge of the park, a contribution to a memorial to airmen who served at West Raynham and a new outdoor learning area close to West Raynham Primary School.
Stuart Renwick, Good Energy’s project developer, said: “As well as helping to reduce our reliance on imported energy and move away from fossil fuels, our proposed solar park at West Raynham will bring some great benefits to the local community and make a big difference to the conditions for local wildlife.
“This is an ideal use for a disused airfield like that at West Raynham.”
If the application is granted later this year, construction could start early next year with the generation of energy from next summer.
Solar panels would be put on the former runway and surrounding land owned by the Raynham Estate.
Alongside the panels GoodEnergy is proposing to plant wildflowers and to allow sheep to graze.
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