A LACK of public charging points in Keighley remains the number one barrier for drivers wanting to switch to an electric vehicle, according to new research.

The figures indicate Keighley is not yet ready for the motoring world’s electric revolution, despite one in ten of the area’s drivers intending to buy an electric car within two years.

The findings note: “Despite continuous rise in interest from drivers, in the past 12 months only 5,021 publicly available charging points have been added to the national network, taking the total to 17,729 charging points across the UK.

“For Keighley drivers, the main barrier is still the lack of charging points, with 67 per cent of respondents citing this, followed by the price (60 per cent) and ‘range anxiety’ – the fear that one charge wouldn’t get them where they need to go (55 per cent). 47 per cent worry about long queues for charging points.”

The figures have been compiled by Carwow, a new car comparison website.

But Nick McNally, who with his wife Nicola owns Damems-based electric charging point specialist McNally EV, said there is a momentum for increased electric car ownership, boosted by cash grants to help fund new chargers.

“It’s happening really quickly,” he added. “We’re installing about five to 10 home chargers every week within a 30-mile radius of where we live in Keighley.

“And we’re installing nearly 250 of these a month across the UK. We’re working for organisations such as the National Trust and rental car companies. Everyone seems to be pushing this now.”

The closest public charging device to Keighley town centre is in Scott Street Car Park. It was installed as part of a joint Government, Keighley Town Council and Bradford Council initiative in 2014.

Councillor Michael Westerman, chairman of the town council watch and transport committee, said: “We definitely need more chargers. Some people say you can’t beat petrol or diesel but electric vehicles are the future.

“And it makes financial sense for people to install chargers because with hybrid cars, someone who stops for electricity could also fill up with petrol as well.

“If you’re a business and you spend a few thousand installing a charger, in the long run you’re going to make that money back.”

Andrew Hooks, chief operating officer at Carwow, says: “If the Government is serious about enabling drivers to ‘go green’ they need to take positive action.

“We’ve seen demand for electric and plug-in hybrid increase significantly, as consumers are becoming more aware of green alternatives.

“If we fail to plan for the infrastructure required, drivers will be discouraged from adopting more eco-friendly models, when the time is right to capitalise on public appetite.”