0191 378 6100

Common Farm Solar Energy Park


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What is this project?

Common Farm Solar Energy Park is a new and exciting renewable energy project proposal in Rotherham that will generate around 49MW of electricity – enough to power approximately 18,800 homes each year.

The planning application for Common Farm Solar Energy Park was submitted to Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council in July 2022 and was recommended for approval by its officers. In May 2023 Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council’s planning committee resolved to approve our plans to create a solar farm and battery storage park.

Meet the project team

Solar / flex project manager

Jill Askew

Peter Faraday

Development engineer

Peter Faraday

Senior development planner

Rachael Edmunds

Community relations manager

Jamilah Hassan

Senior project secretary

Rachel Scott

Our plans

The plans are from Banks Renewables, part of The Banks Group and the company that developed and operate Penny Hill Wind Farm in the South East of Rotherham.

After undergoing a detailed land search, the Common Farm site was identified as having the best opportunity to create a solar farm that links directly into the nearby electricity substation.

The local electricity grid has sufficient capacity to accommodate our proposed south facing Common Farm site. The project will also include a battery storage facility which will enable us to store energy generated from the sun and deliver it to homes when they need it most.

The land used for the solar farm creates a safe place where nature and wildlife can flourish. The ground beneath the solar panels will be created in to a wildflower meadow and increased planting in hedgerows and field boundaries will bring both landscape and wildlife benefits. We are very keen to ensure a net gain in biodiversity on the site to ensure a benefit to local wildlife. The specific enhancements will be decided using the results of our ecological surveys and liaison with the Council and other relevant organisations.

Key project benefits

.8k homes

Supplied with renewable electricity each year

Up to MW

Potential electricity storage capacity

Tonnes of CO2 saved each year

Up to £

Community benefits

£ M

Project investment

Key facts

  • Potential amount of electricity generated: Installed capacity of around 49MW which would provide enough electricity for approximately 18,800 homes each year.
  • Potential electricity storage: Up to 50 MW
  • Panel height: Circa 4.5m
  • Location: North of Todwick Road on the western approach into Dinnington.
  • Land used by solar panels: Approximately 116 hectares
  • Current land use: Agriculture
  • Lifespan: 40 years in operation
  • Construction period 6-9 months
  • Decommissioning: Infrastructure will be removed with the site returned to farm land.
  • Footpaths/bridleways: No closure or diversions
  • Connection to electricity grid: Thurcroft substation
  • Traffic management during construction: Access to the site will be via Long road/Common Road.


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Why Solar?

The UK Government has set ambitious targets for renewable energy generation to ensure the country meets its net zero targets and combats climate change. In order to meet these targets and ensure the security of our energy supply, new renewable infrastructure and generating facilities must be developed. By choosing electricity generated from solar technology and providing energy storage facilities, we can help ensure the security of our electricity supply, meet our energy targets and reduce greenhouse gas emissions whilst protecting and promoting local wildlife.

The cost for developing solar technology has significantly reduced in recent years. Solar is now one of the cheapest ways to produce electricity, which should assist in minimising household energy bills.

Supporting your community

We believe in supporting the local communities that host our projects so that you share in the benefits. Common Farm Solar Energy Park would bring a wide range of local social, economic and environmental benefits.

Consultation work is continuing on how the annual package of up to £50,000 community benefits that forms part of the project, which could equate to up to £2,000,000 through its lifetime, might best be used to support local community and environmental priorities. Just like our nearby Penny Hill Wind Farm Community Fund, we would work with your community to identify the priority projects and initiatives that we could support in your area if the solar farm is approved and constructed.

Your community will have a say in the local projects that should receive support. Please do get in touch and let us know how this fund could be used.

Local groups in your area who have already benefited include Treeton Community Centre, Swallownest Bowling Club and Ulley Sailing Club.

Protecting and enhancing local wildlife

To ensure the solar farm benefits wildlife as well as generating renewable electricity, we are keen to secure a net gain in biodiversity on the site.

The ground beneath the solar panels will allow the creation of a wildflower meadow and increased planting in hedgerows and field boundaries can bring both wildlife and landscaping benefits. Part of the site will be managed for the benefit of lapwing.

We have recently carried out a range of investigations on site to inform the design of the solar farm. We submitted a planning application to Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council in July of 2022.

Inkerman House, St John’s Road, Meadowfield, Durham, DH7 8XL

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