Solar farm development

Tees provides legal support to a landowner

Solar farms have become popular for landowners to generate income from their land and are part of the growing renewable energy sector. However, the process of setting up a solar farm can be complex. This case study highlights the importance of seeking legal support when developing renewable energy infrastructure to ensure that all necessary legal and regulatory requirements are met and to mitigate the risk of any disputes arising during the term of the lease.

If you are considering starting a renewable energy project on your land or have been approached about renewable energy development, it’s vital that you seek expert legal advice to ensure you protect your interests.

Alex Waples, senior associate lawyer, and the Tees renewable energy team acted for a landowner who wanted to install a solar farm on their land. Tees undertook due diligence to identify potential issues with the proposed site, negotiated and completed the lease and any necessary easements, and provided ongoing advice throughout the term of the lease.

Due diligence

Alex and the renewable energy team undertook a detailed review of the title documents, as well as a detailed review of various searches commissioned against the proposed solar farm site.

The purpose of the review is to identify any potential issues. For example, a parcel of land may be burdened with a historic covenant preventing the building of a structure in, over, or under the parcel of land in question. Any such covenant could significantly affect the site's efficacy, and various design changes may need to be made to accommodate it.

 Option agreements and lease negotiation

Alongside due diligence, the early stages of a transaction involve negotiating and exchanging an option for the lease and for any required easements.

Alex provided legal assistance in drafting the option agreement that granted the solar farm company the right to lease the land to install solar panels. He and the renewable energy team also negotiated the lease terms on behalf of the landowner, reviewing and drafting the lease agreement to ensure that it complied with relevant laws and regulations and represented the client's best interests.


Once the funding is secured and the site is satisfactorily viable, the options are triggered, and the transaction can proceed to installation. The lease must afford sufficient solar farm installation rights, including access to neighbouring land.

Completion of the lease and easements

With funding, Alex arranged for the options to be triggered and completed the lease and the necessary easements. With the lease and easements in place, the installation of the solar farm could start.

Ongoing advice


During the lease term, The Tees legal team was available to provide ongoing legal advice. Tees’ dispute and resolution team provided tailored advice on exercising the tenant’s rights. They can advise on triggering any option to renew the lease or, alternatively, deal with any transaction whereby the tenant wishes to dispose of their interest in the solar farm, that is, by way of assignment.

If any disputes arise during the lease term, the dispute resolution team will provide expert advice to achieve the most commercially practical outcome.

If you are considering or if you have been approached about renewable energy development, contact our expert legal specialist today.

Call our specialist solicitors on 0808 231 1320

Tees are here to help

We have many specialist lawyers who are based in:

Cambridgeshire: Cambridge
Essex: BrentwoodChelmsford, and Saffron Walden
Hertfordshire: Bishop's Stortford and Royston

But we can help you wherever you are in England and Wales.

Chat to the Author, Alexander Waples

Senior Associate, Commercial Property, Cambridge office

Meet Alexander
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