Shropshire Council not budging on EV charging point locations in Ludlow

At the beginning of last week, I sent a summary of representations on the location of the next round of EV charging points in Ludlow town centre to Richard Marshall the portfolio holder for highways.

No one is objecting to extra charging points. They are urgently needed. But the plan clusters too many points together on Broad Street and Corve Street. And they miss out the opportunity of installing charging points on Coronation Avenue.

However, the response from Councillor Marshall is disappointing and it could have been written by any council anywhere in England. It pays no attention to local circumstances at all.

There is no problem with the number of charging points being proposed. We want them and more but it is the concentration of charging points in this phase of the roll out that is the issue.

I publish the correspondence between myself and Councillor Marshall below. I would add to my points that Smithfield car park is an ideal location for EV charging points. This should eventually become the EV charging hub for buses, trucks and cars and vans.

The government has done nothing I can see to boost capacity in the EV charging and installation industry. It has left that to the market and we have seen in other industries that the market can’t always deliver, especially when there are tight timetables to suit the deadlines imposed by government grants. Experience is that the priority is on installation to meet targets not maintenance of charging infrastructure that have developed faults. That means that when an EV charging point fails, it takes a long time to get it repaired.

My summary to Richard Marshall

There have been several representations about the proposals for EV charging from residents.

There are common themes. Residents don’t need EV charging points nearby as they do not have EV vehicles. Clearly, that is an argument with a short shelf life. There is also an implication that parking spaces outside are for their households which is not the case.

However, there is justified concern that the EV charging points are too clustered. I think eight charging points together on Broad Street is too many given the need for residential and visitor parking. These should be split up with a maximum of four at the proposed location.

The four charging points on Corve Street have met with strong objections. I think two EV bays would be appropriate.

That leaves us with six EV charging points to locate. At this stage in the rollout, the best location would be on Coronation Avenue which is rarely full to capacity.

There are no objections to the charging points in Galdeford car park.

Richard Marshall’s response

Thank you for your email and your reasoned points in the attachment, I strongly believe that all residents deserve the right to not only own EV’s but are able to charge them close to where they reside. This should not be a luxury afforded to only those that are fortunate enough to have off street parking.

As a local authority for the sake of the environment, we can’t afford to be left behind in encouraging residents to switch to more eco friendly methods of transport. A large part of that is the installation of the infrastructure that is required for EV’s to become a viable option and this is particularly pertinent in the more rural locations.

The match funded grant from the government, will enable 270 new EV charging points across the county, with a large portion being on street chargers. Thus ensuring that EV purchasing and use, is a more viable option, across the entire county.

Many manufactures are committing to stopping production of diesel vehicles by 2030 and it is interesting to see, that more and more manufacturers are investing in to the R&D of alternative energies. So we are sitting on the dawn of a new era in the way our motor vehicles are powered and therefore, we have to be ready with the infrastructure for that new dawn, in every part of the county and indeed the country.

2 comments on Shropshire Council not budging on EV charging point locations in Ludlow

  1. Thanks for pushing this. It’s a pity that the SCC fails to communicate or listen to local knowledge and common sense. It’s an arrogance they share with Central Government.

  2. Certainly true that the SC response has no relevance to the points made.

    A more important question is who are these charging points for? They are not rapid. If for residents and to encourage EV use, they need to be put where people live and can’t other=wise access a charger

    If they are to encourage visitors, then a different placement strategy is needed – is Coronation Av. really the best place?

    Regarding Andy’s earlier points, the economics of EV costs and grid capacity mean that a ‘commercial’ (= profitable, private sector) charge point operation in Shropshire is unlikely to succeed for some years with the present market structures and incentives.

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