Our Proposals

We are proposing to build a new energy farm with solar photovoltaic (PV) and energy storage infrastructure connecting to the Burwell National Grid Substation in Cambridgeshire.

Following the non-statutory consultation, we looked carefully at where to locate the different elements that comprise the Scheme and how we would manage their impact on the local environment. You can view the locations of the different elements of the Scheme, such as solar panels, battery storage, landscaping, and screening in the plans below.

As you will see, the Scheme is located across four sites as set out in the plans on this page:

• Sunnica East Site A, near Isleham
• Sunnica East Site B, near Freckenham and Worlington
• Sunnica West Site A, near Chippenham and Kennett
• Sunnica West Site B, near Snailwell

Further details about where each of these elements will be located are provided in the plans below, through the Virtual Exhibition and consultation booklet, and in the Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEI Report), which is summarised here and available to view here.

Sunnica East Site A and Site B Plan
Sunnica West Site A and Site B Plan
Cable Route and Grid Connection at Burwell

Our proposals have been further developed since the non-statutory consultation. We have considerably reduced the degree to which our Scheme impacts on nearby communities as part of this process.

Around 26% of the land within the Scheme boundary is no longer proposed for energy production or battery storage. It will instead be used for landscaping, ecological or archaeological mitigation purposes. The areas proposed for development are now set further back from nearby villages. One of the sites that we presented at the non-statutory consultation – Sunnica East – now comprises two smaller sites: Sunnica East Site A and Sunnica East Site B.

We have also further developed our proposals for connecting Sunnica Energy Farm to the National Grid. This has included confirming the route that the underground cable will take from the sites to the connection point at Burwell, and establishing three potential options for the connection point to the Substation. Whilst the cable corridor route has been confirmed, the width of the corridor remains wider than will actually be required as we are still undertaking environmental assessment and design work.

You can view our updated proposals for the cable route and connection to the Burwell National Grid Substation on the plans here.

The components of the Scheme will include:

  • Solar PV modules and mounting structures

  • Solar stations (made up of an inverter, transformer, and switchgear)

  • Onsite cabling

  • Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS)

  • Electrical compound comprising of a substation and control building (to be located individually at Sunnica East Site A, Sunnica East Site B, and Sunnica West Site A)

  • Site office space (to be located at Sunnica East Site A and Sunnica West Site A)

  • Construction laydown areas

  • Internal access roads and car parking

  • Fencing and security measures around the Scheme boundary

  • Landscaping and drainage

  • Archaeological mitigation areas

Update – 9 November 2020

Since the start of the statutory consultation, we have been continuing with its design development process; which will be further influenced by the responses we receive from the consultation. This has focussed on reviewing the access strategy to land to ensure that impacts to the highway network and agricultural land can be minimised wherever possible.

As a result of this design development work, the proposed Scheme boundary set out in our consultation materials needs to be amended to ensure that the Scheme can be properly delivered with minimal impacts.

These changes are set out in the plans available to download here. These have sought to ensure that the Scheme limits include all relevant field, hedgerow and tree boundaries. Specifically, at Chippenham Fen, the proposed new boundaries will incorporate additional vegetation; a small area of the Chippenham Avenue Fields County Wildlife Site; and a small area of the tree lined avenue which forms part of the Chippenham Park Registered Park and Garden.

No other changes to the Scheme are proposed at this stage, and that the information you may have accessed to date remains otherwise the same.