Conservation officer asks home owner to remove solar panels
Posted by Cathy Debenham on 15 October 2012 at 10:16 am
Solar PV is a permitted development, however that doesn't stop problems with planning cropping up. Individual councils are left to interpret the rules as they see fit.
We have just heard of a recent example in Dacorum Borough Council in Hertfordshire. A YouGen reader had a 3kw system installed last September (2011). Recently he had a visit from an enforcement officer saying that the council wants them to remove or resite two of the panels.
The system consists of two strings on two roofs. One has five solar PV modules, the other, nine (see picture above).
A neighbour complained to the council about the solar PV installation. In a letter to our reader the council's conservation officer says: "I consider that the random location of the panel (sic), in particular those at eaves level, adversely detract from this roof slope and the setting of the listed building and curtilage listed buildings. There appears to be scope to relocate the two panels which are at eaves level on the southerly roof slope of the garage." (There isn't a garage at the property, the second string is on the roof of the two storey extentsion. Moving additional panels there is not possible as the inverter is not big enough).
Our reader writes: "Our house is not a listed building nor is it in a conservation area. The listed building is about 300 yards away We are a semi detached house and our neighbour also has panels on the same roof. The council has no problems with the installation next door. If you have any suggestions I would appreciate it."
I'd be very interested to hear any views on this case, especially from those with expertise in the field - and stories of similar problems with planning officials. Please add your thoughts in the comment section below.
If you have a question about anything in the above blog, please ask it in the comments section below.
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