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Solar Panels – Installation

Solar Panels – Installation
7 November 2011 Christopher Moore

The Wirral Council planning portal (http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/permission/commonprojects/solarpanels) website states:

All solar installations are subject to the following conditions:

  • Panels on a building should be sited, so far as is practicable, to minimise the effect on the appearance of the building.
  • They should be sited, so far as is practicable, to minimise the effect on the amenity of the area.
  • When no longer needed for microgeneration they should be removed as soon as possible.

Roof and Wall Mounted Solar Panels

The following limits apply to roof and wall mounted solar panels:

  • Panels should not be installed above the ridgeline and should project no more than 200mm from the roof or wall surface.
  • If your property is a listed building installation is likely to require an application for listed building consent, even where planning permission is not needed.
  • Wall mounted only – if your property is in a conservation area, or in a World Heritage Site, planning consent is required when panels are to be fitted on the principal or side elevation walls and they are visible from the highway. If panels are to be fitted to a building in your garden or grounds they should not be visible from the highway.

Standalone Solar Panels

The following limits apply to standalone solar panels:

  • Should be no higher than four metres
  • Should be at least 5m from boundaries
  • Size of array is limited to 9 sq m or 3m wide and 3m deep
  • Should not be installed within boundary of a listed building
  • In the case of land in a Conservation Area or in a World Heritage Site it should not be visible from the highway.
  • Only one stand alone solar installation is permitted.

Building Regulations

If you wish to install a solar panel on your roof building regulations will normally apply. The ability of the existing roof to carry the load (weight) of the panel will need to be checked and proven. Some strengthening work may be needed.Building regulations also apply to other aspects of the work such as electrical installation. It is advisable to contact an installer who can provide the necessary advice.