Army's first ever solar farm in Leconfield to help save more than £250,000

  • Report by Frazer Maude

The army's first ever solar farm has been unveiled at its Normandy Barracks in East Yorkshire, which will help the army save more than a quarter of a million pounds in sustainable energy costs each year.

The solar farm at the Defence School of Transport at Leconfield spans the size of around eight football pitches, and consists of over 4000 solar panels.

It's the first of 76 similar farms which are planned for construction over the next ten years to help to reach the Army's ambition of Net Zero by 2050.

Defence Minister, Jeremy Quin MP, said changes can be made despite challenges.

Jeremy Quin MP was at the unveiling of the army's first ever solar farm in Leconfield. Credit: ITV Calendar News

''There are always challenges, but there are things we can do. Using our estate better, whether that's planting extra trees, there are things that we can do to sequester carbon. There are also things we can do to reduce the carbon we use.''

Each one of the 4248 photovoltaic panels can generate 550 watts of electricity, meaning the site as a whole can provide enough energy to power the equivalent of around 600 homes.   

Most of the energy will be used on site for accommodation blocks, classrooms and offices. Any surplus will be fed into the national grid.

The Army says the scheme has financial, as well as environmental benefits.

Major General David Southall, Army Director of Infrastructure, said the utility saving will be about £250,000 a year.

The project works in partnership with environmental groups, and provides ecological enhancements to improve biodiversity, and to protect the local ecosystems.