MP backs £37 million for electric car plan

Chris McPherson, from East Sussex County Council highways contractors Kier, wearing a helmet-mounted camera aimed at deterring anti-social driving around roadworks
Chris McPherson, from East Sussex County Council highways contractors Kier, wearing a helmet-mounted camera aimed at deterring anti-social driving around roadworks

Nearly £2.5million is being made available to a consortium of local councils in an announcement made by local MP and Lib Dem Transport Minister Norman Baker which will provide a “gear change” in the uptake of electric vehicles.

The Polegate and Seaford MP, who recently launched Lewes’s first electric vehicle charging point at Lewes train station, has announced over £37million of funding nationally, and local electric vehicle users are set to benefit hugely.

The aim of the fund is to make owning an electric vehicle more convenient and to encourage the uptake of more electric vehicles.

Locally, the South East Consortium has been offered nearly £2million to roll-out a network of charging points across the region, including the Lewes constituency.

For the first time ever on public streets in our area the charging points will be “rapid chargers” which can charge an electric vehicle in around 30 minutes.

Southern Rail is also set to receive nearly £400,000 to build on the charging point already installed at Lewes Station by rolling-out charging points at stations throughout their network.

The South East Coast Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust is also in line for a grant with the coalition government offering nearly £100,000 for install charging points on its estate.

Mr Baker said, “My announcement is a gear change for electric vehicle uptake. It will allow for a strategic network of charging points across the Lewes constituency and beyond which will make electric vehicles a really credible alternative to the traditional petrol or diesel driven car.

“A decent network where an owner can charge their car in just 30 minutes for the first time ever on public streets will make it more convenient for existing owners, and will encourage more people to invest in an electric vehicle which is great news for the environment.”