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Shared mobility news January 2015

Happy New Year and welcome to the latest edition of Shared Mobility News!

Find out what’s happening in the world of car clubs. You’ll also find links to latest recommended reads and details on upcoming events.

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Developing Car Clubs in England Programme

There’s been some great coverage of the Developing Car Clubs in England (DCCE) projects as they have started work and we’re looking forward to more developments over the next few months.

Derwent Valley in Consett Magazine


In December, BBC Derby breakfast show featured project coordinator Luke Barley and Pierre Fox from Co-wheels talking about the project and the funding it had won. Show presenter Ian Skye tried out a car club car live on air. The Derby project is currently inviting tenders to run the service, with cars anticipated on the roads within six months.


Meanwhile, BBC Look East covered the Norwich Car Club funding win with an interview of Rex Warner packaged with footage of Norfolk Car Club member opening car with smartcard (which they filmed in July when Baroness Kramer visited). In addition, the Norwich Evening News and Eastern Daily Press have both covered the news along with online news site EDP24.

Norfolk Car Club is ordering new cars from January. Follow developments on the Club’s Facebook page.

Harbury Energy Initiative

Harbury Energy Initiative’s plans for an electric car club in the village were featured on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire Radio as well as getting a mention on the local section of BBC Breakfast. In addition, there’s a full write up in the village newsletter. Harbury’s plans are regularly updated on the Harbury Energy Initiative Facebook page.

Derwent Valley Car Club

David Anderson, MP for Blaydon put down an Early Day Motion congratulating Derwent Valley Car Club on their win in the Houses of Parliament. There’s also a nice article about Derwent Valley Car Club in Consett Magazine. The Club has started collecting responses to its market research survey. You can follow project progress on the Derwent Valley Car Club Facebook page.

Please send Developing Car Clubs in England Programme news to Tom O’Donovan.


Community Minibus Fund

The deadline for community transport operators to apply to the Department for Transport community transport minibus fund is 15 January. This £25 million fund supports the community transport sector in providing vital services to communities which may not be serviced by a commercial bus service.

Apply here


NHS Sustainability Day

NHS Sustainability Day (26 March) is part of a sustained campaign aimed at organisations to initiate or continue progress towards better sustainability practice. It has now attracted senior level endorsement within the NHS and from the Prime Minister.

A regional roadshow in Gloucester on 5 February will cover transport issues and feature car club case studies. Speakers include Jonathan Mitchell, Head of Strategy, Office for Low Emission Vehicles and Mark Armstrong-Read, Head of Programme Management and Business Analysis, Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Trust. Full programme: NHS Sustainability Day Agenda – Gloucestershire.

The campaign of regional road-shows gives health-workers across the country the chance to participate in networking, learning about best practice and innovative ideas. The national awards scheme recognises and publicises this achievement. There are tools and case studies on the NHS Sustainability Day website which provide access to proven technologies, methods and projects that have yielded great results.


FuelGood feels good!


Energy Saving Trust has recently launched a new and improved version of the FuelGood app. This app is designed to help track fuel efficiency for each car journey you make. It will help monitor your fuel efficiency and provides hints and tips on how to adapt and improve your driving style.


DEFRA Air Quality Grant Programme Award Details

Electric vehicle developments have benefited from a £1 million fund, awarded by DEFRA to 24 local authority projects designed to improve air quality in their area as part of this year’s Air Quality Grant Programme. The Grant Programme for 2014/15 focused on supporting projects set up to tackle nitrogen dioxide levels and mitigate emissions from road transport.

The programme included £128,800 awarded to Westminster City Council to install electric vehicle charging points in car club bays and an award of £20,800 to allow Bristol City Council to buy and use an electric vehicle and promote electric vehicles more widely.

Other projects receiving funding included improvements to cycling infrastructure, gas buses and traffic management projects. Full details


Driver Collect 2+ car sharing website launched

A new 2+ car sharing website has been launched. According to marketing director Jerome Thircuir the website “makes it a lot easier for you to find shared rides right from the comfort of your couch. It simplifies things for both parties by constantly searching for the best available matches on any given route and take a series of adequate security measures to ensure a safe ride for all.”

Check out Driver Collect’s “searchless ride sharing” site at


Scotland Community Car Clubs Workshop

A Scottish Community Car Clubs Workshop was held in December in Glasgow where small town and rural car club managers from across Scotland met to discuss issues and share their success stories. The sessions covered five main topics – insurance, sustainability, electric cars, expansion and collaboration. A summary of the issues and solutions is available from Carplus.

While these were discussed in the context of the Scotland operations, many of the ideas resonate more widely and are similar to issues raised through the recent DBis Sharing Economy review (see previous Shared Mobility news) and the development of the London Car Club Strategy.

Emerging from the workshop was a desire for a Community Car Club forum for operators across the UK to continue the discussions online and encourage collaboration between groups. Carplus has set up an online forum on the website for community car clubs and community groups. Please email Morag for login details.

We will also be issuing a regular newsletter specifically aimed at community-run car clubs and the particular challenges facing those clubs operating in rural areas. Again, if you weren’t at the meeting but would like to receive the newsletter, contact Morag.


Local issues

There have been a couple of instances of councils looking to raise revenue and cut costs to the detriment of car club services.

For instance, the recent City of Edinburgh Council budget consultation suggested savings of £160,000 by reducing car club usage and raising revenue by charging for the use of car club parking bays. Carplus submitted a detailed response to the budget consultation identifying the benefits the city derives from one of the most successful car clubs in the UK and challenging the savings identified.

Although such instances are rare, we are concerned that, with many councils facing difficult decisions stemming from required budget cuts, some may seek to raise revenue from car clubs. This is likely to have a disproportionately damaging effect on transport service provided by car club operators to local residents and businesses as an alternative to private car ownership and use.

If you have any concerns or issues to report in this area, please contact Matthew Eastwood.


Car Clubs in Public Sector procurement frameworks

Some more progressive public sector bodies have embedded car club use into their staff travel provision. However, the main barrier to this happening more widely has been that most public sector bodies use central procurement frameworks for the provision of services for staff travel. These have not to date included an option to consider car clubs as a solution alongside more usual fleet procurement or the use of car hire. This issue was included in Carplus’s submission to the DBis Sharing Economy review in November 2014.

Crown Commercial Services, who are responsible for designing the procurement framework for vehicle hire, are currently re-drafting this to include car clubs as an option. They have approached car club operators and Carplus to ensure that the new frameworks include car clubs so that public sector bodies can consider them and car club operators can be included in public sector frameworks as suppliers. This will be a major step forward not only to help embed car clubs in staff travel nationally, but also to make car clubs more widely visible by giving people experience of them through the workplace.


Recruitment - Car Club Development Worker (Scotland)

Carplus is recruiting a part time Car Clubs Development Worker in Scotland. Full details of this opportunity here.


Forum 24

17 February 2015, London

The Carplus Forum 24 will focus on two key issues of sector development in London and large metropolitan areas:

- Shared EVs: how to accelerate uptake to tackle air quality, broaden experience of EVs and the role of the public sector in influencing uptake. With the current OLEV Go Ultra Low City funding scheme, this session will help outline the role of car clubs in helping optimise the benefits of EVs.

- Shared cars in lower density & lower income areas: This has been identified as a challenge by the London Car Club Coalition, so this session is designed to explore what models may already exist elsewhere as well as providing opportunities to think more broadly about the diversification of existing car club models.

Places are free to Carplus members and London Borough officers.

Book now. Places are limited by the size of the venue, so are likely to book up quickly.


Scotland Shared Transport Conference

25 February 2015, City Halls, Glasgow

The Scottish Shared Transport Conference is filling up fast so readers should book their space now to avoid disappointment.

Shared transport can increase the range of travel options available to businesses and individuals, enabling people to reduce their reliance on cars whilst still being mobile.

Speakers from a variety of lift-sharing, bike hire and car club schemes in Scotland speak about these new ways to travel and the measured environmental benefits of shared transport.

The event is sponsored by Abellio, the new ScotRail franchise operator, which has ambitious plans to integrate rail services with shared transport in Scotland. Key shared transport operators will also be exhibiting throughout the day.

Book here | View full programme

This conference is free to attend for active sustainable transport professionals. In the event of non attendance on the day, a cancellation charge of £50.00 will be levied.

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