Plans for 15,000-panel solar farm next to main road in Leicestershire

Credit: Solar power portal

Plans for a major solar farm next to the M1 in Leicestershire have been revealed.

The proposal by Moto Hospitality focuses on land adjacent to the Donington Park service station at Junction 23a of the M1 in Castle Donington.

The proposed plans involve installing over 15,000 photovoltaic solar panels, forming what is referred to as a “ground-mounted solar farm.”

According to Moto Hospitality Limited, this setup would produce 9MW of power, supplying “essential” electricity to on-site EV chargers at the service station.

Should it receive approval, it is intended to operate for 40 years.

Rapleys, representing the applicant, noted that while the area is already landscaped, additional planting would be undertaken to “enhance screening” for passing motorists.

Planning documents stated: “The proposed development is deemed crucial for the ongoing functionality of the [service area]. Electric vehicles will play a big part in the transition to zero emission transport, but to achieve these targets, suitable infrastructure must be provided to support electric vehicles.”

The final decision lies with North West Leicestershire District Council, which will provide its judgment on the proposal at a later time.