Express & Star

Residents furious over plans for battery site near homes

A campaign group are set to launch a protest against plans to build a battery storage site on greenbelt land near their homes.

The area of land off New Road would be developed into a Battery Storage site under plans by Chiltern Green Energy. Photo: Google Street Map

The No 2 Featherstone Batteries group will protest about the plans by Chiltern Green Energy to build a 100 megawatt battery storage facility on the site of an old farm on New Road in Featherstone on Sunday.

The site, which would be on land near Baneberry Drive, would be an area to store industrial grade lithium ion batteries that go into shipping containers, with around 85 containers believed to be going onto the site.

The group's website highlights some of the main reasons for protesting against the site, including noise pollution, risk of fire and a need to protect the health and safety of the community and natural environment, as well as stop the risk of housing being devalued by the presence of the site.

Group member Kevin Blair said the campaign had begun after the residents had received what they felt was very little notice about the planned site being created and said there was a lot of environmental and noise impact.

He said: "We just got a flyer through the door about a month ago about the live consultation, which closed on November 3 and meant we'd only had two weeks to reply, and not everyone around Featherstone got this, just the people around the actual perimeter.

"It's gone live now and what they've done is submit an environmental impact study assessment request via the Staffordshire Council planning portal and that has now closed because that was all they were doing was asking to submit a request for this site and been told it wasn't required.

"However, these things need to be air conditioned between two and five degrees celsius all year round, and the air conditioning units would be extendable units and heat exchange pumps.

"I got sent a noise map for 40 megawatt site in Walsall, which is half the size, but the noise is ridiculous and would be all year round."

Mr Blair said that he felt that the community hadn't been properly consulted on the plans, apart from leaflets through the door, and had started up the website and campaign as they were furious about the plans.

He said: "Everyone is absolutely furious and if you look at this thing unplanned and if you look at the closeness to the houses, especially when there's so much other land around.

"They're saying that this is land close to the Bushbury substation, but it's actually miles away from the substation

"Our concerns are around fire risk as these things are brand new, so no one knows the fire risk concerns and they're saying 25 metres distance, which is just nonsense as I believe they don't know either and I've already mentioned the noise concerns."

Mr Blair said the next steps were to hold the protest near the site on Sunday, then run a series of surveys, as well as speak to the community about the plans.

He said: "We're speaking to a barrister in Birmingham through the parish council to find out at what point we can contest this without wasting each other's time.

"We're getting the community together on two occasions, with this Sunday coming first where we'll pop up two banners facing each way, then the parish council is going to arrange a community meeting at which Chiltern Energy have turned down attending.

"I'm not being a NIMBY about this, but it's literally going to be too close to the residential area."

To find out more about the campaign, go to

Chiltern Green Energy have been contacted for a comment.