An electric car owner has to charge his vehicle through his first-floor window after being told to remove a charging point he installed himself.
Joe Keating, who rents a flat in Falinge, Rochdale bought an electric BMW in an effort to cut carbon emissions and fuel costs and installed a charging point next to his parking space.
Not long after, however, he received a letter from managing agents Stevenson Whyte telling him to remove the power-point – a move which he feels is “heavy handed” and shows a reluctance to support the “green agenda”.
The managing agents acknowledged that hurdles electric vehicle owners face when living in apartment blocks are a big issue in the industry, but said they have a “duty of care to ensure the safety of all individuals at the development and a responsibility to ensure the lease terms are complied with”.
Joe admitted he did not ask his managing agents before installing the charging point for his vehicle, worth almost £50,000, the Manchester Evening news reports.
However, he said he “welcomed” a constructive conversation about the issue. He also said he had been denied any opportunity to appeal the decision.
“I can’t be the only person that lives in that type of accommodation and will be now starting to think about trying to move towards a low carbon economy, and we’re all going to have to have these kinds of vehicles eventually.
“There’s no immediate plans from the developing agent to put any charge points in, so what am I supposed to do?”
He also pointed out that the UK suffered its hottest day on record in the last month, saying that people will “have to get on board a bit more” with electric vehicles given the climate emergency.
“It just feels a bit heavy handed in the backdrop of the highest temperatures the UK has ever had. We’ve got impending charges around Greater Manchester with all the Clean Air Zone plans.
“As a society, we need to change these barriers that are in the way needlessly.”
Joe’s ordeal comes among worries that inner city residents will be excluded from the electric car revolution due to a lack of charging stations.
The Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) website says there are currently 360 electric vehicle chargers in Greater Manchester, and you can use their website to find your nearest point.
The government is also funding an EV home-charge scheme, where they pay 75 per cent of the cost of installing an off-street charging station.
But for those renting or living in communal buildings, they are subject to landlord permissions and limitations, and installing a power-point can be challenging.