Hadrian’s Wall is ready to be conquered by the electric car – as charging points have just been installed along the 84-mile route of the Roman ruin.
Eight Podpoint chargers are now in place at homes and B&Bs near the 2nd century structure, which runs from Wallsend on Tyneside to Bowness-on-Solway. The final four will be in place by the end of the week.
It’s hoped the project will attract visitors and leave a legacy that lasts as long as the wall.
Nigel Mills, the Director of World Heritage and Access for the Hadrian’s Wall Trust said: “Hadrian’s Wall is increasingly seen as an eco-tourism destination. We believe the electric car scheme for Hadrian’s Wall is a first for World Heritage Sites.”
Malcolm Redman who runs Bush Nook B&B, one of the sites to get its own charging point, told ELN he’s now sold on electric vehicles: “Personally I think it’s the way forward. If I had the money right now I’d buy an electric car. I think everyone’s been a bit behind the game on electric cars. There’s too many people doing bits and no one’s tied it all together.”
He admits no one has used the charging point yet but added it’s early days: “It’s a bit like ‘Field of Dreams’. If you build it they will come.”
The chargers are being installed by Solway Renewable Energy using government funds.
Suzanne Burgess, Director of Solway Renewable Energy told local news outlets: “As usual we’re in a chicken-and-egg situation where people won’t buy electric cars because they worry about the range and no-one will install electric charging points because there is no demand.”
She told ELN the firm has plans to roll out 100 home charging points across the county by the end of 2013: “The funding is out there and we’ve demonstrated that the demand is there, the last thing I want as a Cumbrian is for us to be left behind in this thrilling transport revolution.”