Havering plans for electric charging in all its car parks 'within a year'

A Tesla car using a Source London EV charging point, London. Picture date: Friday March 5, 2021.

Havering Council has committed to installing charging bays in all the council car parks within 12 months. - Credit: PA

Electric car charging points will be installed in all council-owned car parks within a year, the authority has said.

Havering Council is currently consulting on its electric car infrastructure and encouraged residents to get involved.

This comes as driver Jeff Arnold, who has lived in Harold Hill for 25 years, wrote to the Recorder about electric car infrastructure in the borough.

He said a lack of charging bays is putting people off buying the more eco-friendly vehicles, and since switching to an electric model five months ago, he has found it “difficult” to find charging points near his home.  

Currently, the 59-year-old has to drive to publicly-available bays, such as the Shell station on Eastern Avenue, even though this is not convenient and means he has to wait "up to an hour".

A Havering Council spokesperson said it is encouraging residents to take part in its consultation on electric charging points so it can ensure the bays are "put in places where they are most widely used”. 

Jeff said the council should be doing all it can to encourage drivers to switch “sooner rather than later” before a 2030 ban on selling petrol and diesel cars comes into force.  

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He said: “It’s difficult to find anything, and as I can’t charge at home and there is nowhere nearby, I have to drive to charge my car up and wait, meaning I have to meticulously plan my days.  

“I don’t expect to get it for free, yet we’re expected to use electric vehicles and having no charging points, which can be off-putting for people.

“Some London boroughs have installed a number of charging points on streets so residents can charge while they are parked. Others (including Havering’s partner borough Newham), have teamed up with electricity providers to install charging points on street lamps.” 

The council’s spokesperson added: “Electric vehicles are just one part of the long-term future looking at helping to reduce harmful emissions that pollute our air.  

“Over the next few months we will be launching an action plan which will lay out how we tackle the climate change challenge in Havering.” 

The consultation is available at https://www.havering.gov.uk