Agenda item

AYLMERTON - PF/22/1298 - Installation of 28 ground-mounted solar panels (retrospective); Row Farm, Holt Road, Aylmerton, Norwich, Norfolk, NR11 8QA; Mr N Ayres


The PO introduced the Officer’s report and recommendation for approval subject to conditions set out on p.23. She noted that this was a retrospective application and advised that the item had been brought before Committee for consideration for the reasons detailed on p.21.


The PO advised that the site was located within the AONB, North-West of Aylmerton, and affirmed the sites location, context of the site with the solar panels being located a considerable distance from neighbours, and the type of solar panel used.  The key issues relating to the proposal were principle and site history, design and renewable energy, residential amenity, and impact on the AONB.

Members Debate


  1. Cllr V Holliday thanked the PO for her report and asked about the anti-reflective surface of the solar panels and the amount of solar glare limited, as she was uncertain if this could be quantitated. She observed that the Landscape Sensitivity Assessment Document had not been referenced in the report, and considered this document contained detail which may be beneficial.


  1. The PO advised that information about the solar panels provided to Members had been provided by the Applicant. She confirmed she could speak to the Applicant to seek further clarification about the solar panels and their surface coating, should this be of use.


  1. The MPM commented that it was in the interest of the developer that the solar panels were anti-reflective and angled correctly, otherwise the efficiency of the panels be reduced. The MPM noted comments regarding the Landscape Sensitivity Assessment Document and advised that he considered that there was enough information presented to Members to enable them to make their determination.


  1. Cllr G Mancini-Boyle expressed his hope that the solar panels were of the latest technology and were recyclable, noting that this had been a problem for older models.


  1. The Chairman reiterated that this was a retrospective application and that the panels should be considered as they currently were. 


  1. Cllr A Fitch-Tillett noted that the application was contained within the AONB and that she was assured that any application located within the AONB would be scrutinised by Norfolk Coast Partnership with their own team of planners, and that they would have commented had they been concerned about the application. She stated that as Norfolk Coast Partnership were happy with the application, she too was happy. 


  1. Cllr A Brown expressed his support for the application and proposed acceptance of the Officers recommendation subject to conditions. He stated the importance and usefulness of solar panels in generating electricity which could be fed back into the grid, and noted that the proposal accorded with the Local Plan and with the Councils Climate Emergency declaration.


  1. Cllr P Heinrich commented that had the panels been located on a roof they may not have been brought before Committee. He stated that the panels were on a small scale, out of the way, providing clean energy to the site, and that such developments should be encouraged. He affirmed that small scale schemes were the future and expressed his disappointment that the government did not recognise this and provide appropriate grants for such schemes. Cllr P Heinrich seconded the Officers recommendation.


  1. The Chairman expressed her support for the use of solar panels and noted the provision for energy to be fed back into the grid was available but that the amount of money being paid to owners was continuing to decrease, something she found extraordinary.


  1. Cllr A Yiasimi expressed his support of the Officers Report and stated that he saw no issue with the application.


  1. Cllr J Toye affirmed that he regularly walked past the site, throughout various times of the day and year, and that he was unaware that solar panels had been installed as they were that low lying.


  1. Cllr P Fisher agreed that the panels could not be easily seen from the adjacent eastern footpath, and that he too was unaware that the panels had been sited. He commended the PO for her report and relayed positive feedback he had received about her.




That Planning ApplicationPF/22/1298 be APPROVED subject to conditions relating to the following matters and any others considered necessary by the Assistant Director for Planning.


1.Approved plans

2. Removal of installation when no longer required.


Final wording of conditions to be delegated to the Assistant Director for Planning.


Supporting documents: