MP asking for update on Scotton solar farm.

Residents in Scotton, Farnham and Brearton have contacted local MP, Andrew Jones, concerned about the lack of any information about proposals for a solar farm in the area.

Gridserve are considering building a Solar Generation Power Plant & Substation covering 88 hectares of farmland between Scotton and Brearton.  They put an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) scoping opinion application to Harrogate Borough Council.  The purpose of this was to see whether the council felt a formal EIA was necessary to accompany a detailed planning application and what the breadth of that assessment would be.

There were objections from nearby parish councils and also from the Harrogate Ramblers and the Harrogate and Dales Horse Riding Association.  Even the local Green Party has objected to large scale solar farm developments on agricultural land.

The council, in its response, confirmed that a detailed EIA would be required. That response was sent to Gridserve at the end of July 2021. 

Andrew commented: “I have been in touch with the council’s planning department and no planning application has been submitted since that date.  From talking to many local people, I know that residents feel very much like the threat of an application is hanging over them.  No-one disputes the need for renewable energy.  It is primarily the location and effect on agricultural land which is the issue.

“I have therefore written to Gridserve to ask their intentions for the land.  I hope, given the local opposition, that they will be reconsidering the plans but I will let residents know the position when I receive a response.”