JP Morgan plans to start work this month on building a canopy of solar panels over its Bournemouth car park.

The town’s biggest private sector employer says the cells would generate enough power to supply the equivalent of 1,850 homes.

The covered car park on the Chaseside site will also contain power points for electric cars.

News that the work would begin before June came in a message to staff from Karine Sweeney, the banking giant’s Bournemouth location leader, and John Rivett, sustainability lead for its Bournemouth hub leadership team.

The memo said: “In recent years we’ve seen significant investments across our campus that have transformed our hub, all thanks to your feedback and our aim to make Bournemouth a great place to work.

“Even during these times of increased home working, we continue to make investments in projects that align to the firm's sustainability goals which result in long term operational efficiencies. To this end, we are pleased to advise that the planned installation of a solar panel canopy over the car park of the Chaseside campus is poised to commence.

“The project will be delivered in four phases, starting towards the end of this month and concluding in mid-October. Once installed it is anticipated that the solar panels will generate power which is equivalent to powering 1,850 homes. The project will also deliver a number of charging points for fully electric cars and the under-canopy will be equipped with a solar charged LED lighting system. The construction site will be run in full accordance to government guidelines relating to COVID-19.

“This project is a strong signifier of the firm’s commitment to continuing to make the Chaseside campus a great place to work."

The New York-based bank is working to ensure that 100 per cent of its power supply in Europe, the Middle East and Africa comes from renewable sources.

A planning application was approved last year for installing solar cells covering 10,500sqm on the car park site, as well as 3,000sqm on the roofs of three Chaseside buildings – the Hampshire, Dorset, Solent and Satellite 2 buildings.

Case officer Julie Allington said the panels would not harm the local area or the 18th century manor Littledown House on the Chaseside site.

“The perimeter of the site is heavily treed, providing good screening to the proposal. The photovoltaics would not be visible from outside the site and therefore would not have any significantly detrimental impact on the amenities of local residents,” she wrote.

The Civil Aviation Authority initially raised concerns about “glint and glare” from the panels but was satisfied when the original proposals were revised.