Air quality is a big issue for this country and we need to do everything we can to improve it. Poor air quality impacts significantly on those with health problems, such as those who suffer with asthma, and so we need to find solutions to reduce air pollution. The use of electric vehicles is one of many ways we can help to do this.

Personally, I am a great believer in electric vehicles and am considering whether to soon buy one. As a council, we currently offer an electric charging point at our East Pallant car park, and this provision is something we have long wanted to expand to other sites and towns. I am pleased to say that by the end of the year, we hope to have a total of ten locations providing charging points across the district. As a council we have committed to invest £45,000 to deliver this exciting project.

We are hoping that by taking this action we will:

  • encourage more people to buy electric vehicles;

  • further support existing users;

  • encourage those with electric vehicles to visit our beautiful district.

What is really good news is that the electric driving range is increasing all of the time. Typically, new electric cars can drive around 150 miles before needing to be recharged. Our new charging locations will offer one of two types of charging point. One will charge a battery in around two hours and the other, which is designed for long-stay car park locations, will charge over five to seven hours. The type will be dependent on the electric charge supply available at each point. Locations will include points in the three largest car parks in Chichester, plus Bosham, Midhurst, Petworth, East Wittering and Selsey.

What many people are unaware of is that the Government offers grants for those wishing to buy an electric vehicle. The Office for Low Emission Vehicles will pay a proportion of the cost, with the car dealer or manufacturer accessing this on your behalf. The level of discount depends on the type of vehicle you opt for. You can find out more by visiting the Government's website

I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this by emailing me at leader@chichester.gov.uk and I promise to keep you updated as the project progresses.

Best wishes,

Cllr Tony Dignum