Time running out to become part of innovative community-owned solar farm

The community-run solar farm in Reach

The community-run solar farm in Reach - Credit: Archant

A community group in Reach is offering people the chance to buy shares in an innovative new solar farm planned for the village.

But time is running out to raise the funds needed to build the solar farm, with a series of Government tax breaks and financial incentives set to close on May 31.

When complete, the solar farm will cover about 1.5 acres of land that is currently fallow after years on intensive farming and is expected by organisers to be capable of generating enough electricity to power 50 homes - around half the village.

The solar farm will cost about £360,000 to build and members of the Reach Community Solar Farm group are hoping to raise the cash by offering shares.

To date, more than 70 people have invested in the scheme and £200,000 has been raised – but more is needed before the deadline expires.

Paul Robinson, who is chairman of the co-operative that villagers have set up to build the solar farm, said: “The community solar farm is a brilliant idea because we can take responsibility for the future of our planet ourselves rather than waiting for politicians and big business to act.

“With the backing of more than 70 investors and nearly £200,000 funds raised already, we’ve raised most of what we need, and it would be a tragedy if we don’t reach the target.

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“Not only will that be bad for the planet, but we will be missing out on access to the feed-in tariff and tax reliefs which are currently only accessible to a minority who can install solar panels on their own home.

“This really is a once in a lifetime opportunity for our village to turn the tide against global warming.”

For more information, visit www.reachsolarfarm.co.uk