In less than a century since Britain’s first fuel station opened, the number of forecourts has peaked, declined and been overtaken by charging stations designed for battery-powered cars.
In fact, there are now almost 1,000 more public places to charge electric cars than there are forecourts to pump petrol in the UK – 9,300 EV charging locations
Almost 80% of UK petrol stations have closed since 1970, while the number of electric vehicle charging locations has increased from just a few hundred eight years ago to around 9,300 EV charging locations in August 2019. That’s compared to 8,400 fuel stations, according to data supplied by Zap-Map.
Of these locations, more than 1,600 provide ‘rapid charging’, and can recharge a typical EV battery to around 80% in under an hour. According to Zap-Map, a website which enables drivers to locate and update EV charge points in UK & Ireland, two new rapid charge devices came online every day in the last month. Almost all UK motorway service stations have charging stations installed, the majority of which provide a rapid charge option.
Transport for London has installed more than 1,000 EV charge points in the last year alone, yet supply of conventional fuel within the capital is becoming scarcer. Central London now has nearly half as many petrol stations per car as the Scottish Highlands; only four remain within the congestion-charge zone.
Most electric vehicle owners only need to charge at home however, so the UK government is looking to further support EV adoption, recently announcing a proposal for the installation of charge points for EVs in all new housing.