Electric vehicles: Is Yorkshire and the Humber ready for a full roll-out?

Drivers who want to make the switch to electric vehicles in Yorkshire and the Humber are warning that the region’s roads and travel networks might not be ready to cope with everybody making the change. 

The government expects most motorists to be fully electric by 2030, with sales of new diesel and petrol cars set to be banned, but new research by the County Councils Network claims that in some more rural parts of the Calendar region, the average distance between public charging points is 16 miles - compared to one every mile in London. 

Bob Sherman runs a service in his village using an electric car to help vulnerable people get out and about, but there are currently no public charging points so he relies on power from a local library to charge it.

He said: "There are quite a lot of people in villages who can park off the road and have their own domestic charger. But there are a significant number of people who have no opportunity to do that. I'm one of them, I've got an electric car and I can't charge it at home. So what are they going to do if they want people to switch over to electric?"

After years of frustration, Bob and other villagers are taking matters into their own hands by aiming to fund and install public charging points themselves in a shared car park. 

Beyond private and commercial charging points, local authorities are being tasked with installing many public ones.

The Environment and Climate Change lead for East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Chris Matthews, said the authority is committed to rolling them out to where they are needed.

He said: "The East Riding is over 900 square miles, so we've put charging points within our car parks, within our market towns, which are accessible for everybody to use. I don't think there is anywhere within the East Riding more than 12 miles from an electric charging point. Our main focus has been on making sure we've got an even spread."

The Department for Transport says it has committed £620 million to help people transition to electric vehicles, with a proportion going towards improving charging infrastructure.