UK sees surge in number of EV charge points

While numbers are up stats show an uneven geographical distribution

UK sees surge in number of EV charge points

The number of public charge points for electric vehicles is rapidly rising with an increase of 61 per cent between 2018 and 2019 alone, government figures show.

As of 1 April, there were 17,947 public electric vehicle charging devices available in the UK – 3,107, or 17 per cent, of which are rapid devices, the Department for Transport has revealed.

A charging device is a unit capable of charging the batteries of one or more plug-in electric vehicles simultaneously.

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It compares to 8,046 traditional filling stations, according to the latest figures from the UK Petroleum Industry Association.

In the first three months of 2020, an additional 1,436 devices entered the network, increasing by 9 per cent.

Rapid devices also increased by 283, up ten per cent on the previous quarter.

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Edmund King, AA president said: “One of the myths we urgently need to clear up is a perceived lack in charging points.

“With a 61 per cent year-on-year increase and more public charge points being installed every week, it should give confidence to drivers that they will be able to get home in an electric car.”

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While the statistics show there is an ever-growing number of public chargers, there is ‘uneven geographical distribution of charging devices’ across the UK.

The DfT says this is because some local authorities have bid for UK government funding for charging devices, while others have not.

The DfT recently set aside a further £10 million of public funds to councils, which will fund the installation of a further 7,200 commercial charging stations across the UK by 2021.

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Edmund King added: “Encouraging drivers to make the switch to electric cars will also encourage both councils and businesses to install charging infrastructure.

“We believe that further incentives are required to ease the transition to lower emission vehicles such as cutting VAT4 on the sale of certain vehicles or targeted scrappage schemes.”

The figures were published as part of the DfT’s ongoing tracking of public chargers as ministers continue to push motorists to choose electric vehicles to reduce traffic-related air pollution.

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