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Good Energy's new solar farm at Wool in Dorset

Sunny start for Good Energy as its new solar farm goes live

Chippenham-based renewable energy firm Good Energy has commissioned its first solar farm, which went live this week in blazing sunshine.

The 5MW site at Wool, in Dorset, will generate enough electricity to power around 1,300 homes.

Planning permission for the site was received at the end of 2013 and construction on the 34-acre, three-field site began in April 2014.

“It’s great to see the site up and running, and making a contribution to the county’s renewable energy targets,” said Hugo House, of Good Energy.

“In the autumn, we will sow wildflower seeds across all three fields, and later, we plan to allow sheep to graze on the site demonstrating that agriculture, renewable energy production and biodiversity can work side by side.”

Founder and CEO Juliet Davenport said: “The solar farm at Wool will make an important contribution to Dorset’s renewable energy targets, and demonstrates the value of solar power as part of our renewable energy generation portfolio.”

All of Good Energy’s sites adhere to the company’s responsible development charter. The parishes of East Stoke and Wool will benefit from an annual £5,000 community fund, to be administered by a charitable trust set up by local people.

The local community will be able to apply for funding and the trustees will award the money to those projects they judge as best serve the needs of the community.

An additional sum of £10,000 is being given to East Stoke to support its plans to build a village hall.

At the same time, three schools – Bovington First, Wool Church of England First and St Mary & St Joseph First – and the D’urbeville Hall have all benefited from the installation of small-scale solar panels.

“We appreciate that local people are ‘hosting’ our developments and this is our way of saying thank you to them,” said Hugo.