Plans to build solar farms that would have powered 2,400 homes withdrawn

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Plans to build two solar farms that would have powered more than 2,400 homes have been withdrawn.

Solar Power Inc UK Services Limited (SPI) wanted to build a 16,900-panel farm on 7.5 hectares of land near Warmfield Lane in Wakefield.

And it also wanted to build another 16,000-panel farm on 9.5 hectares of land south of Royd Moor Lane in Hemsworth.

Each solar farm would have generated 3,700 MWh per annum, equivalent to providing power for 1,200 homes.

But SPI has now withdrawn the plans after the government announced subsidies for small scale solar farms will be axed.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change is consulting on plans that would see subsidies for farms, typically around 25 acres in size and power around 1,500 homes, end in April next year.

The government claimed the move was necessary to protect consumers.

A SPI spokesman said: “SPI were not able to secure grid connection for these two sites and the government have recently identified changes to the financial support for solar photovoltaic which has shortened the timetable to progress with these sites.”

The proposals for the new solar farms were unveiled at Crofton Community Centre in May.

But John Stead, of Pineapple Cottages in Warmfield, objected to the plans when they were announced. He said: “I did not want it built right outside my house but my main problem was nobody came and spoke to me. Alternative energy is the way forward but it must be built where people want it.”