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Anglian Water wants to put solar panels on the dam at Rutland Water

Villagers from around Rutland Water gave their views on plans from Anglian Water to erect solar panels below the dam of the reservoir.

The company says the move would generate a third of the energy it needs to power the water pumps and reduce the company’s carbon dioxide emissions. Villagers appeared to support the use of such renewable energy, but they had concerns over how the project might harm wildlife and accused Anglian Water of not releasing sufficient detail of its proposals.

Anglian Water says up to 20 hectares of land off Sykes Lane, Empingham, could be used, with 45,000 panels installed. The panels would cost ‘millions’ but an energy company would pay for this, with Anglian Water buying power from it.

Solar panel consultation (8440876)
Solar panel consultation (8440876)

Anglian Water engagement manager Grant Tuffs said the consultation event at the Audit Hall, Empingham, on Wednesday gave locals a chance to air their views. It was early days and the company would listen to local opinion as it refined its proposals.

Among the Empingham residents Abby Heard said she supported renewable energy but she wanted the panels screened well so they would not be seen from the village.

Caroline Atkinson agreed, with similar concerns about the impact on the beauty of the village.

Ian Ray said renewable energy is a necessity but Anglian Water should present more detailed plans.

But others, who declined to be named, said villagers were unhappy with the proposals and felt floating panels on Rutland Water would impact less on views and local wildlife.

Rutland and Stamford Mercury report: 'Wild boar' spotted near Rutland Water.

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