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Save Ash Level & Richborough Roman Fort from a Devastating 205 Acre Industrial Solar Site Set To Connect Ash and Sandwich

A significant planning application has been submitted for massive 205-acre (128 football pitches) solar site across local productive fields in Ash, almost joining the village with Discovery Park, and with a 40-year ‘temporary’ lifespan.

This will irreparably change our historic and ecologically rich landscape for generations and remove high-quality and productive farmland. This is an inappropriate site and a scheme with no local benefits. There are more suitable brownfield sites available, just less convenient for the global energy giant behind it.

Here’s the threat:

  • 205 acres / 128 football pitches
  • Loss of productive farmland
  • Threat to protected species
  • Destroy the visual impact and character of area
  • Threat to the visual setting of Richborough Roman Fort
  • 40 years duration
  • 2700 HGV lorries – thousands of tonnes of CO2

This site provides the developers with convenient proximity to power grid connections and a more profitable way of exploiting this farmland for landowners John, William and Jeremy Smith.

Proposed under the guise of sustainability, the greatest threat to the sustainability, economy, character and communities of Sandwich, Ash, Richborough and Woodnesborough is the new industrialised zone and corridor this will create, extending almost from Discovery Park to Ash, resulting in the loss of productive agricultural land.

The Ash Levels is enjoyed by thousands year-round for walks, bike rides and horse riding.

An Industrial Corridor With Devastating Effects

This area also provides a home to a rich variety of native and visiting wildlife, many of which are protected species, such as beavers, badgers, water voles and dozens of migrating bird species. With unsuitable access and a 12-month ‘temporary’ construction process bringing 2700 HGV movements, 70 a week, with a colossal carbon footprint from this alone, let alone the Chinese production and shipping of the number of panels required to cover this farmland.

National policy for large solar farms is deliberately vague, with the onus deliberately placed on local authorities like Dover District Council to make legacy decisions that will devastate local communities.

Statkraft, the global energy giant behind the scheme, has put the local community through hell for almost two years before finally submitting planning immediately before Christmas, giving the Parish Council and community just weeks to read the 99 documents, with over 2000 pages of why planners have to accept this industrial plan.

Find Out Why Else To Object And How Here >