Electric cars are coming: but where will you recharge in the North West?
The number of charging points around the UK has increased by about 50% in the last year, according to statistics from EV charging site Zap-Map.com, but there are noticeable gaps in provision around parts of the country and in particular throughout the North West.
A further recent report from Capital Economics have suggested that fleshing out the UK's charging network will cost £45.9bn between now and 2050, getting the UK ready for the electric vehicle revolution. To aid this, the government has allocated £5 million in funding for councils to spend on residential charging points.
According to Zap-Map.com, Southport is only home to 14 charge public charge points. For anyone else wondering where they might charge up a new EV, there are an increasing options, says Ben Lane, co-founder at Zap-Map.com.
"At current rates, we're essentially doubling the number of charge points in the UK over a two year period," he says. Around 10,000 individual charging connectors were installed in the last 12 months in the UK.”
However, Dr Lane adds that there are places where gaps in the network are apparent.
"Wales is the country in the United Kingdom that probably needs to do the biggest catch-up," he says. And while England has by far the most chargers, there are places where coverage is "fragmented".
Most of the charging bays being installed in the North West at the moment are being paid for by private businesses - including electricity companies, car makers and firms, like BP for instance, that also run petrol stations. Chargers might be located at service stations or hotels, leisure centres and shopping complexes, for example.
In some cases, these facilities are free to use but some do charge a fee or a monthly subscription. There are also important differences to watch out for - charging times will vary widely depending on whether you plug in to a slow, fast or rapid charger.
More than £1.5bn will need to be spent on public charging infrastructure by 2030, according to accountancy firm Deloitte. There are huge costs in terms of supplying cabling and substations as well as the charging points themselves, say Deloitte's Jamie Hamilton and Michael Woodward. The government has plans to bring in a new law that would ensure every new home built in the UK has an EV charging point. Some housing developments are already ploughing ahead with this idea.
Pedro Pacheco at market analysts Gartner praises this approach and says that, ultimately, drivers will have to be able to easily charge their cars at home or at work - with minimal change to their daily routines.
"In the end, this is absolutely essential for the acceptance of EVs," he says.
Thinking of installing an EV Charge point?
Did you know we are an approved installer of Rolec EV Electric Charge Points
We offer a comprehensive range of electric vehicle (EV) charging solutions - offering quality products at competitive prices.
There are also grant schemes available for electric vehicle charging points, Ben Carter Electrical Contracting Services can help see if you’re eligible for such grants, and can advise and assist you every step of the way.
The Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) provides grant funding of up to 75% towards the cost of installing electric vehicle chargepoints at domestic properties across the UK.