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‘I don’t see the point’: Residents divided over plans for electric charging points in village

‘I don’t see the point’ – that’s the view of one resident to news that electric charging points are being rolled out in their village. Councillors believe there is demand, though.

The roll-out, which was confirmed by North West Leicestershire District Council (NWLDC) this week, will see four new electric vehicle (EV) charging points installed in the Peggs Close car park in Measham. The car park, which is council-owned, has been chosen to help fulfill the authority’s eco ambitions as part of its Zero Carbon Roadmap.

Set to cost more than £25,000, Measham’s four charging points become the latest part of North West Leicestershire to move towards environmentally-friendly transport options. However, opinion is highly divided over whether it’s a good idea.

READ MORE: Council’s efforts to go green spark debate on town’s parking spaces

“I don’t see the point if I’m honest. Are there really enough electric vehicles about for it to make a difference?” one man told LeicestershireLive. “It’s a nice idea, but electric vehicles are so expensive.

“If they were cheaper maybe I would consider [them]but the price is a big turn off. I’m sure others feel the same, so there’s never going to be that many of them about.”

However, others were more positive about Measham’s EVs. One woman believed it was best to be prepared and help stop climate change in any way possible.

EV charging points have previously been installed in Coalville

“It’s going to be needed and I think this is a start. We’ve got to think about saving the planet,” she said. “I don’t have an electric vehicle but if there were more points around I might think about it.

“I don’t have space where I can charge outside my home, so hopefully the council can provide slots for residents in future. That could encourage people to go green.”

She did concede that there are some issues with the move to EV though. She said the technology had a long way to go for more people to buy the cars.

“I think what’s needed most is either more electric points or cars that have better batteries in them,” she said.

For Peggs Close, its EV points, which will be installed this summer, join a growing number of charging points across the North West Leicestershire district, including in Ashby and Coalville. Additional charging points were also installed at NWLDC’s new Whitwick and Coalville Leisure Center which opened earlier this year.

Anyone who uses a council EV point are charged per kilowatt hour of charging. Those using car parks that charge a parking fee must also pay for their stay, but in Measham no charges will apply as Peggs Close is a free car park.

One Measham resident was skeptical of how many would use the charging points, but admitted they could sway people’s minds. She said: “It’s going to be useful to someone – not me personally – and you’ve got to get ready and have things here, but you don’t see a lot of electric vehicles about. This could encourage people and that’s a good thing I suppose.”

Councilor Andrew Woodman, NWLDC’s portfolio holder for Community Services, believed the authority was meeting growing demand for EV. He said: “As part of our Zero Carbon targets we’re making greener choices for the district and hope to encourage others to look at how they too can reduce emissions. Our network of charging points is growing across the district and helping to fuel the demand for electric cars locally, in turn leading to more charging points and greener roads.”

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