Through the Warmer Crowhurst project the opportunity was identified to install a solar farm on a field in Crowhurst. This solar farm would supply the local area with renewable electricity and would act as a biodiversity reserve and allow the land to regenerate for 25 years. As it would be a Community Energy project it would be owned and controlled by the local not for profit Community Energy Co-op, any “profits” generated would go into a Community Benefit fund and this used to fund the decarbonisation of Crowhurst by funding or part funding energy saving measures such as insulation or renewable heating schemes such as air and ground source heat pumps.
The Crowhurst solar farm opportunity was identified during the Stage 1 feasibility study “Warmer Crowhurst Clean Energy project ”
The project is to install solar panels with a generating capacity of approximately 8 MW producing > 8,900,000 kWh annually, equivalent to the electricity demand of roughly 3000 homes a year ( or 10 villages the size of Crowhurst)
The site has been under consideration since December 2021 and has a significant number of positive indicators that a potential solar farm proposal will achieve planning consent.
The project will therefore take all the necessary steps required to achieve planning consent, secure a grid connection agreement, produce a comprehensive technical specification to procure an EPC contractor, sign an option to lease with the landowner, negotiate a long term Power Purchase Agreement, and raise the finance necessary to develop, own and manage the project for community benefit.
The Rural Community Energy Fund grant will fund Locogen, working with Energy 4 All on the business plan and share offer, and other sub-contractors, to take the project through to its final development stage.