AN EXPLANATION OF A POSSIBLE EXPANSION OF THE SOLAR FARM
FOLLOWED BY THE LITTLE HORSTED ANNUAL MEETING
THURS 4TH FEBRUARY, LITTLE HORSTED PRIMARY SCHOOL 6:30 – 8:30PM
Lightsource has informed us that they are considering proceeding with the other half of the solar farm site adjoining at Bradford’s Lane. They were originally refused planning permission by Wealden – but the position was overturned at appeal. At this time we considered it unlikely that they would proceed due to time constraints – the Government is closing the subsidy scheme for Solar Farms not completed by 31/3/16 and without subsidy these schemes are unviable. However in October 15th they informed us that they may have possibly found a legitimate way to circumvent this decision by involving “The Community”. They would or could not provide any more details but promised “in the near future” to provide a speaker to explain their plans.
Based on this statement your Committee decided to delay the AGM until we could establish what was being proposed. After a long silence Lightsource has now informed us that they are in a position to tell us what they offering – hence the conjoined meeting.
POINTS TO NOTE:
- Lightsource has got the legal right to go ahead with the other half of the original plan, I suspect that the development hinges on attracting finance (both public and private). The questions raised are probably going to involve: On what financial basis are they reopening the scheme? How does the Community benefit? Indeed what is “The Community?” – legally defining this may be crucial. The main question does The Community want it? Should be left to the AGM.
- A large part of the proposed build will probably be in East Hoathly, their parish council will be present during the first part of the meeting: please note that whilst Little Horsted led the negotiations, we acted collectively during the first part of the scheme and were congratulations by Wealden for resolving many of the problems that could have arisen.
- The field taken out of the original plan remains “out”.
- Any significant changes from the original planning application will require fresh planning permission involving Wealden. However having been expensively overturned at appeal once – I doubt that they will be prepared to be burnt twice!
- The Community benefit which has already been agreed for the completed Solar Farm is unaltered and will be discussed at the AGM.
The first part of the meeting, involving Lightsource and East Hoathly will last for one hour after which both parties will withdraw and we will continue with the AGM. The purpose of this “first” part of the meeting is to establish the facts about the proposed scheme, comments and opinions should be left to the AGM – where time will be allocated for an initial “outline” discussion; this also applies to a re-run over the original scheme – unless this is relevant to this new scheme – we are where we are and should concentrate our efforts on dealing with current and future problems – where we might do some good!
It is probably that this proposal may well involve much checking of detail, taking advice sounding local opinion and discussion before we can come to a “settled” conclusion so it’s unlikely that we will be lucky enough to reach a decision at the AGM! However we will be arranging other occasions where you can express your views and your opinion is important!
I hope to see you all at The School on the 4th – there is much to discuss!
Simon Autie – Little Horsted Parish Chairman