Sunny Prince Charlie: solar panels for royal home

The Prince of Wales has been given the green light to install dozens of solar panels at his London home.

A planning application for 32 panels on the roof of Clarence House has been permission as part of the Prince's bid to cut his carbon footprint.

A statement from Clarence House welcomed the approval, saying: "This is good news, particularly as next month Clarence House Gardens will be hosting the 'Start garden party to make a difference', which will showcase various measures people could take to live a more sustainable lifestyle."

Like everyone else, the heir to the throne has to apply for planning permission for major changes to buildings.

This application to Westminster City Council was particularly sensitive as Clarence House, home to royalty for nearly two centuries as well as being of architectural importance, is a Grade I listed building.

It was given the thumbs up after planners were persuaded the panels would be hidden from view from ground level by the high parapet of a balustrade that fronts the building.

The panels are expected to provide around 4,000 kilowatt hours of electricity - equal to the total used by an average London household.

A Westminster City Council spokesman said: "We have approved the planning application from Clarence House.

"There were no objections and the application was not considered contentious. We trust it will make a positive contribution to the Prince of Wales's efforts to reduce the carbon footprint of Clarence House."

Prince Charles has long shown a commitment to cutting his own household's carbon footprint and promoting the sustainable business agenda.

His project to develop and promote a sustainable community, Poundbury, in Dorset, is believed to have contributed over £300 million to the Dorchester economy since it was set up in the 1990s.

David Gibbs


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