Wokingham Borough Council|

Taken from Wokingham Borough News.

More electric vehicle charge points are set to be installed in Wokingham Borough after the council successfully applied for £264,000 in Government funding.

The money will come from the Department for Transport’s (DfT) Local Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (LEVI) capital fund, which helps local authorities to install chargepoints in areas with little or no off-street parking.

By providing an on-street alternative, this removes an obstacle for people who’d like to switch to an electric vehicle but don’t have access to a driveway or garage to charge it in.

The council is preparing an initial list of locations, based partly on residents’ feedback, before going out to tender for a supplier to install the chargepoints. It’s hoped that a supplier will be appointed later this year.

Anyone who doesn’t have off-street parking, and would like an on-street charger within a short walk, should get in touch now to be considered.

Sparking a greener change in habits

The council strongly supports more active and sustainable forms of transport like walking, cycling and taking the bus or train as it is healthier, more affordable and better for the environment.

However, it accepts that some journeys must be driven, especially longer ones, so it is also doing all it can to help people adopt electric vehicles.

Last year, it successfully applied for £282,000 in LEVI capability funding to help plan the expansion of electric vehicle infrastructure for the next three years. This latest funding will pay for the equipment itself, with additional contributions from the supplier.

As the council faces unprecedented financial challenges, it remains committed to providing quality infrastructure through funding from external sources. The LEVI funding is ring-fenced for new chargepoints and couldn’t be spent on anything else.

Building on past successes

In October last year, the council finished installing 38 chargepoints across 18 locations in the borough, a mix of residential streets and car parks. This was funded through £173,500 from the DfT’s On-Street Residential Chargepoint Scheme (ORCS) with additional contributions by Flowbird, the supplier.

Cllr Paul Fishwick, executive member for active travel, transport and highways, said: “We’re delighted to confirm another successful application for Government funding for more chargepoints.

“We’re also very thankful for the support as these projects, which are part of our comprehensive action plan to tackle the climate emergency, rely on external funding at such a financially challenging time.

“We’d encourage anyone without off-street parking who feels they might benefit to get in touch. If we have a clear picture of demand, we can install the chargepoints in places that offer most value to as many people as possible.”

Technology and Decarbonisation Minister Anthony Browne said: “This Government has a plan to help speed up the installation of EV chargepoints, which we’re getting on and delivering.

“This dedicated funding to local councils is part of our plan to ensure people can switch from a petrol or diesel car to an EV when they choose to do so.”

Finding out more…

The council is working to support and increase take-up of active and sustainable travel on many fronts through its My Journey Wokingham team.

This includes improving local walking and cycling routes, as well as bus routes in partnership with operators, and educating residents of all ages about the benefits of driving less.

Residents are also reminded that they cannot charge an electric vehicle on the street by trailing a cable across the pavement, even if the cable is covered, as this obstructs the highway and poses a trip hazard. Anyone doing this could be fined or be held responsible if this causes injury or damage.

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