If the renewable energy scheme – which is proposed to occupy land south of junction 14 of the M56 and to the west of the A5117 – receives the green light, it will be capable of generating enough renewable electricity to power the equivalent of around 1,300 households.
But Dunham on the Hill and Hapsford Parish Council has revealed they intend to object to the application, arguing that a brownfield site would be more appropriate.
Chairman Andrew Jones said: “We do need renewable energy but Peel should look at other sites that are not on the green belt.
“If it was on a brownfield site that is fair enough.
“The green belt is there to separate conurbations. If we keep developing it, we will lose it.
“It’s just like a land grab at the moment with the wind farm and now this.”
Gowy ward councillor Eleanor Johnson agreed that brownfield land should be considered first.
“While we should be encouraging renewable energy, there is a large amount of brownfield land available so why are they using agricultural land,” she asked.
Peel Energy say in their design and access statement that the temporary development – which would be operational for 30 years, after which the land would be restored and available for agricultural use – meets the ‘very special circumstances’ required to justify building on the North Cheshire Green Belt.
In the non-technical summary submitted to CWaC, Peel Energy claim the visual screening afforded by woodland hedgerows around the proposed site mean ‘the presence of the solar farm would not substantially affect the character of the landscape’.
The report also refers to a glint assessment which concluded that there is ‘not expected to be any issue with glint perceived from the road network’ but said there is ‘currently some potential for glint effects to be visible from individual properties and nearby roads around the solar farm’, before adding that screening will prevent ‘most of these effects’.
Peel Energy is also behind the 19-turbine wind farm on land adjacent to Frodsham Canal Deposit Grounds, which was granted planning consent in 2012.