A DECISION on plans for a massive solar farm near St Asaph is now unlikely until at least the middle of next year.

The application for the 290-acre site at Gwernigron, between the A525 and the A55, will be decided by the Welsh Government, which has deemed it as a 'Development of National Significance'.

The scheme would generate up to 62 megawatts, enough to power 20,000 homes.

Last year, following a pre-application consultation by the developers Solarcentury, Denbighshire County Council approved it in principle.

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Since then, the company has been taken over by Statkraft, one of the world’s leaders in solar energy, which is owned by the Norwegian government.

In recent months, there have been numerous exchanges between the developers, various consultees and PEDW, the Welsh Government’s Planning and Environment Decisions department.

In October, the application was suspended until December 17, and now Statkraft has asked for further time to respond to issues raised about the proposed construction methods and decommissioning of the site.

Questions have been raised about the loss of what is classed as best and most versatile (BMV) agricultural land, but Statktaft say it cannot provide the information required until mid-January.

The Welsh Government has set a deadline of January 14 for that to be supplied, and consultees will then have until February 18 to comment on the new information.

When all the information has been received, a series of public hearings on various topics will be held, and the Welsh Government’s case officer, Rhys Spencer, has said that they are expected to be held between March 21 and April 1.

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