MORE than £250,000 has been committed to improving the county’s electric vehicle infrastructure.

In a bid to keep up with the green revolution, Wiltshire Council’s cabinet voted unanimously to use £275,000 in capital cash to bolster EV charging points (EVCPs) in Wiltshire up to 2024.

It was also proposed that the council empowers the city, town and parish councils through a grant scheme to build on-street EVCPs on council-owned land.

Up to £2,500 per site with a total funding value of £70,000 – although this may be increased if usage is greater than predicted.

The council would then operate and maintain those EVCPs and will actively seek opportunities for home to street charging.

READ MORE: Wiltshire Council plans to ‘dispose’ of Rudloe village green

The local authority currently has 76 EVCPs in its car parks which are managed by BP Pulse.

However, it was noted that many of these are several years old. With quickly advancing technology, there is a chance to replace older units, the council said.

The council currently operates these EVCPs for free (at the cost of around £1,000 per year) and will look into charging 35p per KwH used.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Electric vehicle charging point at County Hall

Money generated from the EVCPs would go into a ringfenced fund to improve and expand the current infrastructure.

Cllr Graham Wright said the plan would address the immediate challenge but would also pave the way for a more detailed strategy.

READ MORE: School deletes hoax vaccine consent checklist after sending it to parents

He added the council could do more to encourage the use of electric vehicles, including phasing out the petrol and diesel vehicles in its own fleet.

Another councillor asked if Wiltshire could insist that EVCPs be included in all new-build houses.

Sam Fox, director for place at the council, said that the local authority could recommend this, but not insist as it is not part of government policy.

Cllr Jon Hubbard said he would have loved for the strategy that all council-built houses should have at least the provision for an EVCP.

"How are there ever going to have charging point unless we build it in when building new properties?" he said.

READ MORE: Couple who lost twins raise over £10,000 to help other grieving parents

"The reality is, what happens with technology, we are in a period of time where electric cars will need to be charged.

"Hydrogen may or may not come, we don't know. Something else may come, we don't know.

"But right now electric is the solution, it's a growing solution and the government has admitted that fossil fuels will disappear from the equation. So we've got to cater for electric."

Leader of the council, Richard Clewer said that all houses built by the council were up to zero-carbon standard and would look to the future of Stone Circle for any other additions.

Cllr Clare Cape agreed and said the council should put in these recommendations which would also help developers “future proof” homes.

READ MORE: Plans for a replacement bungalow at a farm rejected

Cabinet unanimously approved the proposals.

After the meeting, cabinet member for transport Dr Mark McClelland said: “This new strategy will greatly improve the EV charging infrastructure throughout Wiltshire.

“It will also enable local town, parish and city councils to identify suitable locations for chargers in their communities, which will allow them to apply for grant funding to install chargers where they are most needed.

“This infrastructure plan will play a significant role in reducing Wiltshire’s carbon emissions and in encouraging more people to make the move to electric vehicles, and we look forward to the chargers being installed in the near future.”