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Gillingham solar park set for completion this spring

By Blackmore Vale Magazine  |  Posted: February 16, 2013

A similar solar park near Sturminster Newton

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A SOLAR farm on the outskirts of Gillingham will soon be generating enough electricity to power approximately 540 homes.

Construction is well under way at Lightsource Renewable Energy's solar park on agricultural land at Slaughtergate Farm, Wavering Lane West.

It is hoped that the 7,400 three-metre high panels will be generating electricity in April.

The renewable energy plant is expected to run for 25 years, bringing annual CO2 savings of more than 9,000kg.

Lightsource will be planting a new hedgerow along the eastern boundary of the solar farm and planting shrubs to fill gaps in existing hedgerows to ensure that solar panels will not be visible from the neighbouring North Dorset Rugby Club and Slaughter Barrow, a scheduled ancient monument, which lies about 415m to the east of the site.

A spokesman for Lightsource Renewable Energy said: "Unlike some other forms of renewable energy, solar farms have negligible impact on the land they stand on. They are noise and emission free, and because they have no moving parts they do not harm wildlife. They also have less visual impact than wind farms or nuclear plants and are much easier to screen using natural planting. A common misconception is that it's essential for the sun to be shining when, in fact, ordinary daylight is sufficient to generate solar energy."

Wind power or solar?

What do you think provides the best source of renewable energy for the local area? Cast your vote on our poll on the right hand side of this page.

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