Last month saw the busiest ever day for people using EV charging points in the UK.

Motoring organisations predicted that more than 400,000 electric vehicles would be on the UK’s roads on Saturday July 22nd, putting more pressure than ever before on the nation’s public charging points. The combination of ever higher EV ownership with the start of the school summer holidays was expected to put the UK’s charging infrastructure to the test.

The service station operator Moto Hospitality forecast that it would deliver an unprecedented 1 million km of EV charging output at its network of 59 sites across the UK.

In anticipation of the high numbers expected at its charging points, Moto worked with Tesla and Gridserve to provide marshalling over the weekend and the rest of the summer holiday period, to give EV drivers more information, ensure the safety of pedestrians and increase the flow of vehicles through charging areas. It is not yet clear if the wet weather over that particular weekend last month meant there was less traffic than expected.

However, marshalling on forecourts is not a long term solution, and more investment is needed if the UK’s charging infrastructure is to keep up with the rise in EV sales.

“The queues will unfortunately be inevitable if more action isn’t taken to support charging providers’ rollout of ultra-rapid EV charging”, said Moto’s CEO Ken McMeikan. “The UK needs to decarbonise, and the switch to EV is one of the most important elements of that. However, as charging providers, time and time again we‘re being confronted by significant barriers in our ambition to make that switch easier for motorists.”

Research by the RAC revealed that only 23% of UK motorway service stations had six or more rapid or ultra-rapid EV chargers. The UK government wants every motorway service area to have this number by the end of 2023.