PLANS for 66 charge points to be installed in Forest car parks have been approved.

Forest Council leaders agreed last Thursday (May 16) the rollout of 33 7kW fast electric vehicle charging stations at 12 of the car parks owned by the authority.

There will be a total of 66 charging sockets and they hope to complete the work by the end of January 2025.

The charge points will be owned by the council and maintained and operated under contract.

The authority will provide just over 50 per cent of the £406,206 required investment, through earmarked funding previously approved for the purpose of decarbonisation.

Climate emergency Cabinet member Chris McFarling (Green, St Briavels), who presented the report at cabinet, said the plan is to offer electric charging to those who do not have off street parking facilities and would need to charge their vehicles away from their properties.

He said the council has been quite cautious to ensure it won’t lose money by its installation.

The council will spend around £206,000 and just under £200,000 of grant funding from the UK Government’s on-street residential chargepoint scheme

“The £206,000 was earmarked for the purpose of decarbonisation at the February full council meeting.

“The council proposes a phased approach to electrical charge point roll out with this phase focussed on one wide geographical coverage in accessible car parks.

“It is intended this phase will roll out relatively quickly as the council is the landowner.”

The project aims to help those without off-street parking to switch to electric vehicles.

“Carbon emissions in the transport sector are difficult to reduce particularly in a rural authority where the use of the car is critical,” he said.

“Accelerating the transition to low carbon electric vehicles is key if we are to stand a chance of meeting our net zero 2030 target.”

There will be 10 chargepoints at Newerne Street, Lydney and Lewell Street, Newent; six at Heywood Road and Rowendean, Cinderford and Swan Road, Lydney; four at Butler’s Mead, Blakeney; Newland Street, Coleford; High Street, Drybrook; Gange Lane, Littledean; Bream Road, Lydney, High Street, Mitcheldean; Riverside, Redbrook.