Shropshire Star

Hundreds sign petition to stop Telford solar farm after controversial decision to overturn council and planning inspector decision

Hundreds of people have signed a petition calling on Michael Gove to reverse a controversial decision to allow a solar farm to be built in Telford.


Government junior minister Lee Rowley MP overruled Telford & Wrekin Council and a planning inspector to grant permission for the farm at New Works Lane, near the Wrekin.

In a decision announced on Monday, the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities agreed that the solar farm would cause "detrimental change to the strategic landscape" but that the benefits of the scheme would outweigh the harm.

The decision prompted the council's Labour leader, Councillor Shaun Davies, to start a petition to get Mr Gove, the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, to reverse the decision.

Councillor Davies said: “Hundreds of residents have already signed our online petition and it is growing day by day. We need to send a strong message to Michael Gove that a solar farm of this magnitude in a beautiful green space like New Works will have a devastating impact on the surrounding environment, which is currently enjoyed and valued by so many.

"This decision should not have been made by a junior minister and I will be knocking on the door of Michael Gove’s Whitehall Office with the petition next week, calling on him to come to Telford and Wrekin and have a look at the proposed site.

"Our message is clear. Our communities, the council and the Government’s own inspector have said ‘no’. We are not against solar farms, but they have to be in the right place and New Works is not the right place.

"Whilst we are not ruling out legal action, it seems ludicrous that as a public body Telford & Wrekin Council have to spend hundreds of thousands of taxpayers’ money when Michael Gove has the ability to look at this personally himself. In the meantime, I encourage residents to keep on signing our online petition."

To view and sign the petition, visit