AN APPEAL has been lodged after councillors in Blaenau Gwent refused plans to extend the lifetime of a solar park to be built near Tredegar.

The scheme at Wauntysswg Farm, Tredegar - on the border of Blaenau Gwent and Caerphilly - has been granted planning permission for a temporary period of 30 years by the Welsh Government as a development of national significance.

But a bid to extend the timeframe by 10 years was refused by the council’s planning committee earlier this year, against officers’ advice.

The committee said the scheme would have an unacceptable impact on the landscape, and the setting of Tredegar Cholera Cemetery scheduled ancient monument, the only one in Wales, 400 metres to the north.

It said extending the timeframe to 40 years would be “significantly longer than previously approved”.

But now an appeal lodged to the planning inspectorate, by developers Elgin Energy EsCo Ltd, claims the planning committee’s decision was “wholly unsubstantiated and directly contradicts the advice of its professional officers”.


A grounds of appeal statement says the impact of the solar park on the landscape is “already considered to be outweighed by the need for the solar park development”.

Elgin Energy claims the committee’s ‘grievance’ with the original Welsh Government decision to approve the solar farm was the “key aggravating factor in refusing the application”.

“The available indicators are that the members approached the application with a ‘closed mind’, in that regardless of the merits of the application, its accordance with the development plan and material considerations weighing in favour of planning permission being granted it would refuse planning permission,” an appeal statement says.

“The behaviour of Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council planning committee is contrasted by that of Caerphilly County Borough Council, who, despite also having concerns regarding the original planning permission, considered the application in a reasonable manner and granted planning permission for the extent of development within its administrative boundary.”

Blaenau Gwent council and a planning inspector, Tredegar Town Council and Cadw - called for the original plans to be refused.