Wiltshire Council is set to vote on whether it should call upon the government to ensure that solar developments are “more evenly spread across the UK” and “not concentrated in specific areas effectively industrialising the countryside.”

The motion has been submitted by Conservative Councillors Phil Alford and Nick Botterill and states that the council is “increasingly concerned at the concentration of solar farms, battery storage and associated infrastructure in Wiltshire.”

According to the councillors, some villages in the county are now “completely surrounded” by solar farms.

They also say that whilst they are not opposed to the principle of solar farms, their continued concentration represents a “significant cumulative impact” and “industrialisation of the countryside.”

If the motion is approved at the next council meeting held on Tuesday, May 21, Wiltshire Council will call upon the Secretary of State for the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities for action.

Micheal Gove will be asked to define more closely what is meant by “cumulative impact” regarding solar farms and to take clear steps to ensure that solar developments are more “evenly spread” across the country.

The motion also states: “We would also ask for clarity of the priority given to ensuring that food production and farming are not destroyed as industries in specific areas through an excessive concentration of solar farms given the massive impact that would have on the rural way of life in villages that have been farmed for time immemorial.”

This comes after recent plans around solar farms have proved controversial among residents.

There are over 40 operational solar farms in the county and numerous others under construction or going through the planning process.

In November 2023, a campaign group called upon Wiltshire Council to pause such developments, claiming that the county was "the capital of solar energy farms with the largest concentration of solar farms anywhere in the UK".

More recently, Lime Down Solar Park plans have sparked angry protests, with the MP for North Wiltshire, James Gray, calling it “biggest issue” he’d seen in his 30 years of service.

The developers argue that it will create 500MW of clean energy and enough to power 115,000 homes.

If it goes ahead, Lime Down Solar Park would stretch across a two-thousand-acre of farmland to the north of the M4, southwest of Malmesbury.

Councillors Phil Alford and Nick Botterill, Cabinet Members for and Housing and Strategic Planning will present their motion to councillors at the meeting.