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Rag Lane Solar Farm Project Information Page

In December 2021, BayWa r.e. UK Limited (BayWa r.e.) and our joint venture development partner Grϋne Energien Solar (GE), obtained planning permission to develop a 49.9MWp solar farm on land approximately 2 kilometres to the west of the settlement of Wickwar, at Newlands Farm, Rag Lane, GL12 8LD.

This webpage provides information about the development and contact information should you have any queries.

About the project

Rag Lane Solar Farm will comprise rows of solar panels mounted on metal frames (tables) secured into the ground via metal posts up to approximately 2.5m off the ground across an area of 26 hectares. The expected generating capacity of the project is up to 49.9 MWp, which is enough energy to supply approximately 15,000 homes annually with clean, renewable energy.

The project benefits from planning permission for 40 years, after which it will be decommissioned and the land returned to its previous use.

Latest news

We are currently developing the detailed design for the solar farm, and carrying out the necessary survey work and checks to discharge relevant planning conditions in advance to starting construction in early 2024.

We also submitted a planning application in May 2023 for the installation of the underground cable route to connect the project to the National Grid. The cable route runs along the adopted highway between the substation to the west of the site and the Chipping Sodbury Substation in Yate (please see the Project Location Map below).

The cable installation would be carried out section by section, with careful management of local access and traffic to minimise any disruption to the local community.

The traffic management measures to be adopted are set out in the Planning Statement accompanying the planning application which can be viewed on South Gloucestershire Council’s (SGC) website here.

About the site

  • Ecology
    • Enhancements of existing ponds to support wildlife
    • Planting of new hedgerows
    • Planting of wildflower meadows
    • Implementation of a habitat strip
  • Landscape and Visual
    • Enhancement of existing hedgerows and landscaping to provide additional screening
    • Deer fencing to be installed around the site
  • Why here?
    • Contribution to South Gloucestershire Council’s targets under the Climate Emergency declared in July 2019
    • The site is visually discreet
    • The site is lower grade agricultural land and can still be used for sheep grazing
    • Area of high solar irridation
    • Good access from the public road
    • Grid capacity available nearby
  • Access
    • Public footpaths will remain accessible
    • Construction and operational access to the site will be from the B4058 via the existing field gate

Rag Lane solar project benefits

  • At peak times, Rag Lane Solar Farm will provide up to 49.9MW of renewable energy that will be transferred into the local grid network operated by National Grid Electricity Distribution - this is equivalent to the annual electrical needs of approximately 15,000 family homes.
  • This project represents an important contribution to meeting the UK's legally binding target under the Climate Change Act 2008 to achieve a 'net zero' carbon account by 2050, and the scheme will also make a significant contribution towards South Gloucestershire Council's targets under the Climate Emergency declared in July 2019.
  • We are committed to using local labour wherever we can throughout the construction and ongoing operational life of the project. We anticipate at least 20 local jobs will be created through the construction phase, with 2-3 long term jobs through the operational life of the project (security, operations and maintenance).
  • Biodiversity enhancements include:
    • reinforcement of existing hedgerows and the planting of 1.7km of new hedgerows along the boundaries of the site
    • planting of native grasses, species and wildflower meadows around the perimeter edges of the solar park
    • implementation of a ‘habitat strip’ running through the centre of the site with new planting improving biodiversity, ecological connectivity and enhancements to the public rights of way passing through the site
  • Continued agricultural use within the site through grazing of sheep between the rows of solar panels, thereby using the land for both energy generation and agriculture during the operational phase of the solar farm.
  • Community Benefits - BayWa r.e. and GE are committed to paying a community benefit of £10,000 per annum once the project is operational.

The need for the project

This project is in response to the pressing need to create a renewable energy supply and to combat the effects of climate change. The UK Climate Change Commission published ‘The Sixth Carbon Budget: The UK’s path to Net Zero’ in December 2020. The report identified that to achieve ‘net zero’ carbon emissions there is a need for, on average, 3,000 MW per year of solar power to be installed in the UK to reach the required level of renewable energy generation by 2050.

The installation of this solar farm will also be in line with South Gloucestershire Council's Climate Emergency Strategy which can be viewed here.

Next steps

It is anticipated that the construction programme will take approximately six months and following appointment of contractors, a detailed programme of works will be available.

It is anticipated that works to install the grid connection would commence towards the end of 2023. More detail will follow in due course.

Download files

Project timeline

Installation of cable route

Construction of solar farm


Any questions?

As a responsible developer and operator of renewable energy projects, we welcome any questions you may have about this development. For further information please contact us below, or email

    Freya Murray
    Consents Manager
    BayWa r.e. UK Limited
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