Pennant Walters is developing proposals for a wind farm on a site at Mynydd Llanhilleth, which lies east of the settlements of Llanhilleth, Brynithel, Aberbeeg and Six Bells, and west of Pontnewnydd and Pontypool. The A472 runs along the valley to the south of the proposed site.
As the proposed windfarm will generate more than 10MW of electricity it is defined as a Development of National Significance (DNS). This means that the planning application will be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) for Wales and considered by an Inspector with the final decision made by Welsh Ministers. More information on this process can be found here.
Pennant Walters recently submitted a scoping request to PINS to ensure the appropriate environmental studies are carried out as the proposals are developed.
This project is one of a number of new proposed wind farm schemes being brought forward by Pennant Walters, and the Project team is committed to informing, engaging and consulting through the design and planning process, to ensure local communities and stakeholders have an opportunity to contribute their views and help shape the emerging proposals.
At this stage, it is proposed that Mynydd Llanhilleth wind farm will comprise the following:
- Up to 12 wind turbines, anticipated to be 4-6MW with an indicative height of up to 180m to tip together with external transformer housing
- Turbine foundations, crane pads and laydown areas
- An electrical substation and control building
- Underground power cables linking the turbines and the on-site substation
- Possible improvements to main site access and temporary construction of access tracks off main access point to access proposed turbines
- Permanent anemometer mast for wind turbine performance monitoring
- Construction enabling works; and
- A temporary construction and storage compound
It is estimated that the wind farm will generate up to 48MW of electricity, which is equivalent to providing enough power to meet the annual electricity needs of approximately 24,000 homes*.
The wind farm will be designed with an operational life of 30 years, exporting renewable energy directly to the Western Power Distribution network.
Welsh Government Policy
In April 2019, the Welsh Government declared a climate emergency and committed to reducing emissions by at least 95% by 2050. In March 2021 this target has been updated to achieve at least net zero by 2050. It also committed to deliver 70% of Welsh energy consumption via renewable means by 2030, and to have at least 1GW of renewable energy in local ownership by 2030.
In February 2021, Welsh Government formally adopted Future Wales: The National Development Framework, which identified pre-assessed areas in which it is expected renewable energy development would take place. The Mynydd Llanhilleth site lies partly within one of these identified pre-assessed areas.
As a local Welsh company, involving the local community in the development of our projects, and ensuring that they benefit from our work is central to our operations. As such, Pennant Walters operates a community fund for each of its wind farm projects, which invests money into the local communities in the surrounding area.
As a local Welsh owned company, this project will be ‘locally owned’, however we are also exploring further local shared ownership and community ownership opportunities in line with Welsh Government targets.
More information on the funding given to our other sites can be found on the individual sites pages online here.
Engagement and Consultation
Pennant Walters will be undertaking extensive engagement and consultation with local councillors, stakeholders and residents on its emerging plans.
The first phase of public engagement on the project is currently expected to launch in June 2021 and we hope that all those interested in our emerging plans will take the opportunity to engage and share their thoughts and ideas with us.
This will be followed by a statutory consultation on the detailed proposals later in the year before we finalise and submit a planning application in 2022.
Land within the proposed site boundary falls under the common land register and we therefore required to prepare and submit an application to the Planning Inspectorate Wales under the Commons Act 2006.
This means that alongside our consultation for the proposed wind farm, we will also be undertaking a specific consultation in relation to the fact that part of the site falls within Mynydd Llanhilleth Common.
This will be an ongoing process through regular engagement with relevant parties, groups and individuals, however it will also follow the trajectory of the pre-application consultation process being undertaken in respect of the DNS application being prepared for submission to the Planning Inspectorate Wales.
Updates : To sign up for updates on the proposals please sign up us at the email address below.
If you have a query or comment relating to the Common Land consultation, please include ‘Common Land’ in the subject header.
We are undertaking pre-application consultation on the proposals for Mynydd Llanhilleth and have set up a dedicated consultation website, which can be accessed here: www.mynydd-llanhilleth.co.uk.
All information in relation to the proposals will be updated on this website, along with information on how to get in contact with us about the proposals.
Thirty4/7 Communications is managing the engagement and consultation for this project on behalf of Pennant Walters. If you have any queries or require further information about the engagement or consultation process, please contact them in one of the following ways:
Call: 0800 699 0081