New research has uncovered the UK towns and cities that are most in need of improved electric vehicle charging infrastructure following the government’s announcement that it will pump £500m into a nationwide fast charging network.

The Rapid Charging Fund will see 2,500 public charge points installed across England by 2030, rising to 6,000 by 2035 when the ban on petrol and diesel vehicle sales comes into effect.

The study by comparison and switching service uSwitch found that Stoke-on-Trent was the worst-served city, with just one public charging point for the city’s 268 registered EVs. Southend followed in second place with almost 202 electric vehicles per public charging point.

Electric vehicle charging

Birmingham, Wolverhampton and Bolton rounded out the top five, with 175, 164 and 161 EVs per charging point.

Bristol was the best-served city, with just under 23 EVs per charging point, followed closely by Milton Keynes with just over 23. The top five was made up of Dundee, Oxford and Brighton, which all had around 28.

Compared with April 2019, the last time uSwitch conducted this study, Coventry had seen the biggest change in its charging infrastructure, installing more than 140 new charge points, a rise of 293 per cent. Sheffield and Derby also saw big increases of 147 and 142 per cent respectively.

Sarah Broomfield, energy expert at, said: “It’s a really exciting time to be an EV driver. This research suggests that the Rapid Charging Fund could have a significant impact for drivers across the UK – especially for those living in cities such as Stoke-on-Trent, Southend and Birmingham who are thinking about purchasing one.

“The funding will be instrumental in delivering a more sustainable future for the nation’s transport. It’s crucial though that this investment is spent wisely and is targeted towards the regions that need the funding most.

“While there is no obvious regional divide across the UK, it’s clear some locations are more prepared than others. We look forward to seeing how these changes can help bridge the gaps and impact what vehicles we see on our roads in the years to come.”

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