Bude’s Co-Car on-demand – first electric car scheme in Cornwall

Co-Cars, the Southwest’s leading shared mobility organisation, launched its electric car club in Bude on Friday 12th November 2021, thanks to Community Infrastructure Levy funding from Cornwall Council and the support of Bude-Stratton Town Council, Bude Coastal Community Team CIC, and the local community. This is the first on demand shared electric car scheme of its kind in Cornwall.

The two electric Renault Zoe cars with dual charging points are located at the Parkhouse Centre town council car park and are available to use by residents (and visitors) who sign up to the scheme.  If you need a car for a hospital appointment or other one-off trip and have a licence, this might be just the answer for you.

Picture By Jim Wileman – Co Cars pictured in Bude, Cornwall.

On January 22nd 2019, Cornwall Council declared a climate emergency. The Bude Climate Partnership has since been formed to work towards achieving carbon reduction in the town by 2030. The rural geographical locations of villages and towns in Cornwall is reported to have a vehicle fleet that is older than the national average, resulting in a more challenging context for carbon reduction from the transport sector.

Co Cars electric cars are powered by 100% renewable electricity with zero emissions at the point of driving, thus resulting in improved air quality. The locally developed and managed electric car club scheme will become part of the solution to address such issues outlined on the Bude Stratton Climate Action Plan. 

Mark Hodgson, managing director of Co Cars comments on the new scheme in Bude: “I would like to thank all those involved in helping bring Co Cars to Bude. Our quest to change the way people travel continues to thrive and succeed throughout the southwest with our range of share mobility services, including Co Bikes and Co Delivery. This is our third car share scheme in Cornwall, but what sets Bude apart from the other schemes in the county is that the town will host two electric cars and charging points, plus two additional public charging points. We hope the residents of Bude will enjoy Co Cars as much as our other members do.”

Olly Monk, Cornwall Council’s Portfolio Holder for Housing and Planning, said: “The Council has been charging developers the Community Infrastructure Levy since January 2019, with the money intended to reduce any potentially adverse impacts resulting from new housing and other building projects.

“This is one of 14 initiatives around Cornwall that was successful in its bid for funding, and it personifies what the scheme is about – to fund infrastructure projects that encourage greener and healthier lifestyles.”

Picture By Jim Wileman – Co Cars pictured in Bude, Cornwall.

Richard Clarke, director of econetiq said: “This is a wonderful opportunity to further our growing relationship both with Co Cars and with Cornwall. The ability to bring both electric car share and public car chargers to the community continues in this way we feel to bring benefits to all and is an excellent balance to a component of future sustainable travel in the region.”

Cllr Peter La Broy, Cornwall Councillor for Bude, comments on the new installation: “I’m incredibly happy to have been a part of the successful funding bid to bring two fully electric community cars to Bude. Being located at the Town Council HQ at The Parkhouse Centre, they will be available to the community, demonstrating the commitment to provide ways for us all to reduce our carbon footprint. As the council has committed to renewable sources of energy, I am pleased to announce that our cars will be powered entirely without the use of fossil fuels. If this scheme is a success, we hope to bring further cars to Bude which will be located to be as convenient as possible to users. In turn, we hope to encourage as many people as possible to ditch their second cars, saving money and the environment.”

Membership with Co Cars enables users to hire by the hour, day, or week, with hire from just £5.50ph with a 4p mileage charge. Charging is, however, free from the Co Cars Bude charging points. The community led car scheme will take care of the insurance, tax, maintenance and offer roadside assistance.

The on-demand car hire is flexible and available to all** providing alternative transport to the infrequent bus service and expensive taxi journeys currently available. 

For more information about Co Cars and membership, head to www.co-cars.co.uk

Picture By Jim Wileman – Co Cars pictured in Bude, Cornwall. L- R Dawn Robinson-Walsh, Bude & Beyond; Cllr Martyn Alvey, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Climate Change, Cornwall Council; Cllr Amanda Tame, Bude-Stratton Town Council and Elected Mayor of Bude; Mark Hodgson, MD of Co Cars; Cllr Peter La Broy, Cornwall Council and Bude-Stratton Town Council; Keith Cornwell, Town Clerk, Bude-Stratton Town Council.

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