Bunkers Hill solar project is planned on land at the east of Bunkers Hill Farm, east of Reading Road (B3349), near Hook. The solar farm will provide renewable electricity for distribution to the national grid. The planning application was granted consent in 2022 and enabling works for the site began in summer 2023.
Project key facts
Up to 67MW of clean renewable electricity to the local grid
Equivalent electrical needs of approx. 23,400 family homes annually
Displacement of approx. 29,300 tonnes of CO2 per year compared to non-renewable fuels
The development proposals for Bunkers Hill solar site can deliver a predicted biodiversity gain of over 50%
Temporary project lifetime of 40 years after which it will be decommissioned, deconstructed and the site will return to its previous use.
Biodiversity net gain
A comprehensive landscaping scheme will help the project successfully integrate with the landscape and surroundings. The plan includes new and in-filled hedgerow planting and enhancement of field margins through proposed meadow mix and grazing mix grasses.
Areas of wildflower meadow, totalling around 12 hectares, have been proposed to benefit a range of wildlife including invertebrates and foraging bats as well as birds and small mammals.
The remainder of the site is to be seeded with a long term grazing mix suitable for grazing sheep so that agricultural activities can continue alongside the solar panels.
Woodland belts with semi-mature trees are proposed for the site's northern boundary and next to the 132kV Substation.
At Bunkers Hill support of the ‘Blue Sky’ community projects initiative will include the improvement and resurfacing of the local playground, creation of a new Jubilee Garden (to honour the late Queen Elizabeth), and re-development of the community pavilion (an important community space).
Access and traffic management plan
A detailed Construction Traffic Management Plan (CTMP) has been prepared to demonstrate how the site will be accessed during the construction period. Once operational, the solar farm will not generate any significant traffic movements, with security and maintenance staff the only likely infrequent visitors.