The Government has announced a financial boost to encourage electric vehicle use and launched a consultation on improving the charging experience.

Small businesses and “those in leasehold and rented accommodation” are set to benefit from up to £50 million to install electric vehicle chargepoints. The investment comes as the Government pledges to make it “simpler and more reliable to use public chargepoints”.

On 13 February 2021, the Department for Transport (DfT) announced that the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) will be opened up to small to medium enterprises (SMEs) and the charity sector, providing a boost as staff return to work.

This investment comes as the department launches a consultation on improving the charging experience – simplifying payments and increasing reliability – taking us a step closer to delivering on the commitment to end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030. The National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) has previously provided feedback to the Government on this issue, highlighting that any measures aimed at simplifying the customer experience is welcome. NFDA will now respond to the consultation.

DfT has also confirmed the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS), which provides up to £350 towards a chargepoint, will continue next year and be expanded to target people in rented and leasehold accommodation.

Transport Minister Rachel Maclean commented: “As the UK accelerates towards net-zero emissions by 2050, we are determined to deliver a world-leading electric vehicle charging network, as we build back greener and support economic growth across the country”.

She added that the consultation “suggests simplifying payment at chargepoints, meaning electric vehicle drivers can use contactless payment but do not have to download an app. It also seeks to make chargepoints more reliable and to force operators to provide a 24/7 call helpline for drivers”.

Guidance for applicants and additional details about eligibility for the scheme can be found here