West Suffolk Council Briefing

Members’ briefing note – September 2019

Sunnica Energy Farm

Since the Members Briefing Note issued in May 2019, Sunnica has carried out a round of non-statutory consultation on its proposals. West Suffolk Council submitted a joint response to the consultation with Suffolk County Council, a copy of which is attached for information.

Sunnica is continuing to liaise with both the District and County Council (and East Cambs DC and Cambridgeshire CC) in relation to key planning matters and is currently considering all of the consultation responses received. Sunnica has advised both Councils that the scheme is still in its early design phase and the scheme boundaries are in flux.

The plan indicates that some changes to the scheme boundaries are being considered by Sunnica although officers await formal confirmation as to the current site boundary.

Sunnica will now progress to the preparation of a Statement of Community Consultation ahead of a round of statutory consultation in early 2020. It is expected that Sunnica will present updated proposals as part of this consultation and local residents will be given the opportunity to comment on the proposals as they evolve.

Following the consultation process Sunnica will move into the pre-submission phase of the project, which will involve the submission of further technical information to the Councils ahead of the formal submission of the application to the Planning Inspectorate for a Development Consent Order. This is expected to happen towards the end of 2020.

We have made contact with an authority in Kent who are dealing with a similar project for a solar farm. They have just completed the Examination stage of the process and are providing us with tips and guidance about how they handled the process this far.

For further information please contact Julie Barrow, Principal Planning Officer (01284 757621) or Marianna Hall, Senior Planning Officer (01284 757351)

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