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Photo by Bill Mead on Unsplash
Photo by Bill Mead on Unsplash
World News

Church solar panel plans cause council drama

by Lydia Davies

The acting Bishop of Coventry, Rt Rev Ruth Worsley, has voiced support for All Saints Church in Bedworth, as it plans to install solar panels on its roof despite its Grade II listed status. 

The proposed installation of 68 solar panels on the church's south-facing roof promises an 18 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions annually and a 40 per cent decrease in electricity bills. 

Moreover, it aligns with the Church of England's goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2030. 

However, the local council's planners are hesitant due to historical preservation concerns. 

They have stressed the need to prioritise historical preservation, citing potential harm to the building and its surroundings. 

"The council consider that the installation of the solar panels would result in substantial harm to the listed building and its setting," the official council report stated. 

When asked about why the solar panel decision was made, Bishop Ruth told The BBC: "It's crucial for us to play our part. 

"What could be better than ensuring our communities are still here in the next centuries to come?" 

The late-victorian All Saints Church, built between 1888 and 1890, holds significant historical value and is part of Bedworth's conservation area. 

Bishop Ruth emphasised that she understands the council's hesitancy to give the solar panel application the "go-ahead". 

She continued: "The church believes that most planning authorities are seeking to do the best thing for their community too" 

The planning committee is set to convene on 19th March to deliberate on the application's fate. 

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