Greentech – a solar farm near Dover
Securing support for an important renewable energy project in Kent
- To announce plans for a 24 MW solar farm on 25 hectares of land near Dover that would provide renewable energy for more than 7,250 homes – enough to power one in eight of the homes in the district.
- To introduce Greentech, the German-based renewable energy company with offices in Milton Keynes, to key stakeholders in and around Dover.
- To undertake a programme of community engagement prior to the submission of a planning application for Chalkpit Solar Farm.
- To promote the case for the renewable energy project which will reduce CO2 emissions by an estimated 10,000 tonnes per year for its 40-year operational lifespan.
- To manage any negative concerns from residents, including the loss of agricultural land, traffic and access, and visual impact.
Results and highlights
- Maxim worked with Greentech and its planning consultant DHA – and successfully developed the public case for the investment in a solar farm and how it delivered for the local community, the council and environment.
- Maxim organised and hosted public exhibitions in March 2022 at Guston Village Hall and at East Langdon Parish Hall.
- Overwhelming local support was secured at the two public exhibitions, with Maxim producing engaging exhibition boards and preparing a comprehensive Q&A for project leaders.
- A website reinforcing key messages was launched, with Maxim creating the content and Greentech hosting it.
- Maxim prepared the Statement of Community Engagement which was submitted as part of the planning application.
- Maxim’s strong relationship with local media secured significant coverage in local business press, broadcast outlets and with positive press coverage.
- The council’s planning committee approved the scheme, with construction work due to start in 2023.
- Maxim was commissioned to undertake the community engagement and media relations support for another Greentech project that’s currently going through the planning process.
Yaw Ofori, Managing Director at Greentech, said: “It was the first time we had used Maxim to support us with our solar farm project. Even prior to selecting Maxim as our preferred PR and Communication partner for this scheme, we were quite impressed with the way they presented themselves and instilled confidence in our decision to move ahead with them.
“Once engaged, we were very happy with their approach, experience and knowledge. It quickly became evident right at the onset that we had selected the best company for the job, as proven during the development of the project communication and PR strategy which was very clear in identifying the key stakeholders plus their respective approaches required.
“This flowed through to the preparation and execution of the public exhibitions, supported by news and press releases to ensure that our message and information went out to the wider public and communities.
“Overall, from the beginning to an extremely satisfactory conclusion of achieving planning consent for our solar project and beyond, Maxim was an assured partner to have worked with, the team led by Andrew Metcalf, managed, controlled and expertly delivered.
“We are very happy with the team at Maxim and we have commissioned further projects with them.”
Community engagement, marketing, media relations, public affairs